1 400gcanorganic chopped tomato or 500 ml organic passata
2tbsporganic tomato puree
2tbspextra virgin olive oil
1/2organic onion finely chopped
1cloveorganic garlic finely chopped or crushed
10gfreshly chopped organic or homegrown basil
salt to taste
For the Beanballs
1 400gcanorganic black beans roughly mashed
1organic onion finely chopped
3cloves of chopped garlic
1tbspMarmite or another yeast extract such as Vegemite
20gvegetarian Italian hard cheese or vegan cheese
1organic pasture-raised egg or egg replacement
1a handful of chopped parsley
3tbspextra virgin olive oil
Make the Sauce
Over medium heat, add the olive oil and garlic to a medium-sized saucepan until it softens. Be careful and stir regularly so that the onions don't brown, they should just soften.
Add the tomato puree, canned tomatoes or passata, a pinch of sugar (or balsamic if you're swapping the sugar out) and salt to taste. Once the sauce starts to bubble, lower the heat and simmer with the lid on for 25-30 mins until the sauce thickens.
If you've used coarsely chopped onion or chopped tomatoes instead of passata, use a stick blender to smooth out the sauce. If your pan is small enough for the liquid to cover the blender, this can be done straight in the saucepan, just be careful not to burn yourself with splashing hot sauce.
Make the Beanballs
While the sauce is cooking start the beanballs. Turn the oven on 200C/ 180C fan assisted or gas mark 6.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a saucepan. Over medium heat att the onions and mushrooms and cook 5 mins. Remove from the heat.
Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl by adding the mashed black beans, cooked onions & mushroom, garlic, breadcrumbs, yeast extract, cheese, egg and parsley. This should form a slightly wet mixture, that's perfectly normal.
Roll the mixture into small balls using your hands. The mixture should comfortably make 20 beanballs, smaller bite-sized balls are better as it creates little bursts of flavour within the dish. Use a tbsp of oil to grease a medium-sized oven tin, then place the beanballs in the tin and drizzle with a tbsp of oil.
Bake in the oven for 30 mins until golden, remember to turn them half-way through.
Combine the Ingredients
Once both the sauce and the "meatballs" are cooked, add the "meatballs" to the tomato sauce and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Serve with Spaghetti and a sprinkle of Italian hard cheese.
The chopped mushrooms can easily be swapped with 150g quantity of aubergine or courgette/zucchini To save on chopping, whiz the onions, garlic and mushrooms in a food processor until finely chopped.This recipe can be frozen and is suitable for batch cooking