Quinoa and Lentil "Meatballs"

Lentils are low glycemic index foods that improve glycemic control and serum cholesterol, and are an excellent source of protein and minerals. Lentils are number six on Dr. David Jenkins' Top 10 Healthy Foods. This web-exclusive recipe for Quinoa and Lentil "Meatballs" comes from celebrated chef Victor De Guzman, Executive Chef at Rosedale Golf Club, who provides recipes for the Foundation's bi-annual magazine Urban Angel.

Yield: Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup cooked lentils
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup ricotta
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • Oil for frying

To serve:

  • 2L quick tomato sauce
  • 1 lb spaghetti or blanched julienned vegetables
  • Grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Place the quinoa, lentils, eggs, cheeses, garlic, oregano, parsley, lemon, salt and pepper in a food processor and pulse just until mixed but not completely smooth.
  2. Place the mixture in a bowl and stir in the breadcrumbs, cover, and let sit for 30 minutes.
  3. Shape the mixture into golf ball-sized balls.
  4. In a large skillet, heat about 1/2 inch of oil over medium heat, then brown the "meatballs" on all sides. Transfer to a paper-lined tray and prepare the sauce.
  5. Place the "meatballs" into the warm sauce, and cook over low heat until warmed through, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Serve with cooked pasta or julienned vegetables, or on a platter topped with grated Parmesan.

Note:

You can substitute the pasta with julienned vegetables such as zucchini, carrots, celeriac or parsnips. These vegetables should be blanched in salted boiling water for 30 seconds or depending on how thick you cut the vegetables.