Tofu Miso Balls

by Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit) on December 27, 2010

Our Christmas celebrations continued with a brunch of eggs benny this morning at my Aunts house (so happy to have a break from cooking!). I swear we waited until noon to crack open the wine but cannot promise that champagne followed the same time restriction.

Much food and drink was consumed and with that I decided the next recipe I would share would contain an ingredient that will help to kick start our digestion after the holiday feast(s).

Miso

Miso is a paste made up of soybean and grains. The grains that are used are usually rice, barley or wheat.

How its made

The soybeans, grains, and yeast are added together and left to ferment for weeks to years (depending on the specific type of miso being produced). Once the mixture has reached it’s ideal age the ingredients are ground into a paste similar to that of nut butter.

Health benefits of miso

Miso contains high amounts of tryptophan, manganese and Vitamin K. The type of synthesizing bacteria caused by the fermentation of miso makes it a phenomenal helper on the healthy bacteria of our gut. These synthesizing bacteria, also called probiotics are thousands if not millions of little bacterium that:

  • improve our ability to absorb and utilize vitamin B
  • strengthen the health of our colon (a key to overcoming food sensitivities)
  • aids in healing bowel irregularity
  • regulates lymphocytes and antibodies

Also, miso is has relatively high amounts of Vitamin B12  which is high recommended for vegans (it’s very challenging for a vegan to find rich sources of Vitamin B12 – something that’s needed for the functioning of our brain and nervous systems among other things).

Tofu Miso Balls

Serve with dipping sauce (recipe below) or on top of a fresh greens salad. This recipe is very adaptable – play around with the spices and vegetables (peppers, onions, carrots) that accompany this dish to switch up the flavours.

Inspired by Vive le Vegan!

Ingredients

  • 200g extra firm tofu
  • 3 tbsp miso
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp rosemary, fresh
  • 2 shallots (2 cloves of garlic work well too)
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp braggs
  • 1.5 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1.5 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 medium sized red bell pepper, diced (the smaller the better)
  • 1/4 cup carrots, grated
  • 1/2 cup chives, green onions, or red onions, diced (the smaller the better)
  • 2 cups quinoa flakes
  • Dipping sauce (below)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F
  2. In a food processor, puree tofu until crumbly
  3. Add miso, vinegar, rosemary, shallots, tomato paste, braggs, mustard, and grapeseed
  4. Puree until smooth
  5. Remove from food processor to large bowl and add in bell pepper, carrots, chives and quinoa flakes
  6. Roll into balls and place on parchment paper lined baking sheet
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes

Makes 15-20 Tofu Miso Balls

Dipping sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 cup tomato paste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp basil
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp honey or agave
  • 1 tsp braggs

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan and cook until heated through

Serve warm with tofu balls

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Jill

Uh, YUM! Snarfed these down for dinner tonight!

Reply

Daniel

looks great. but, what is braggs??

Reply

Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Thanks Daniel, Braggs is a gluten-free soy sauce. You could use plain soy sauce if you’re not sensitive to gluten.

Reply

Daniel

Thanks.
What can i use if i don’t have quinoa flakes?

Reply

Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Breadcrumbs would be best!

Reply

María

I tried this recipe tonight. It took me a while, since I am very slow in the kitchen, but it was fairly simple and the tofu balls came out delicious! It was definitely worth it. Since I was unable to find quinoa flakes or Braggs, I used Japanese bread crumbs and soy sauce instead (which I now see is your recommendation). Thank you so much for posting this, now I know what to make when my parents and sisters eat meatballs, and I’ll be able to share it with my roommate when I go to college this fall (she is also a veggie). Great recipe!

Reply

Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Hi Maria – I’m happy you liked the recipe and found some substitutions that worked for you. I’ve never heard of Japanese bread crumbs, will have to check that out next time I’m at the market. Hope you’re having a fabulous weekend!

Reply

Eva

Can’t seem to buy grapeseedoil here, only for non-coocking. What would you recommend instead?

Reply

Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

No worries, Eva. I’ve made these with olive oil, walnut oil, sesame oil (not the toasted kind), and they’ve turned out fabulous every time. I think any oil will do the trick! Enjoy :)

Reply

Liz

For the dipping sauce, instead of the tomato paste and water, can I just use tomato puree? Maybe 1 1/2 c of it? Or would you not recommend that?

Also, I know you recommended bread crumbs in lieu of the quinoa flakes to another commenter but would quick-cooking or regular rolled oats work here, too?

Reply

Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

I’ve made the dipping sauce with crushed tomatoes before and didn’t like the flavor. Tomato sauce would work though! Just recommend you cook it for awhile to really allow the flavors to develop. Yes, quick cooking oats would work. Oat bran would work, too!

Reply

Eva

Ended up making them as part of an pre christmas dinner, with grapeseed oil (searched a little harder because this oil comes in handy). They were sooo good!
Keep doing what you do Leanne, you’re such an inspiring person :)

Best wishes for 2013!

Reply

Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

I’m glad that you liked them, Eva. Grapeseed oil is highly versatile. It’s become a staple in my kitchen. Thank you for your encouragement :) Best to you in the New Year!

Reply

Katie

Could you use cooked quinoa in place of the quinoa flakes?

Reply

Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

I’ve heard of people doing it before, but haven’t tried it myself. You could also use bread crumbs or oats if you’re not sensitive to them!

Reply

Jasmine

These look so great! Making them next week. Would it be crazy to use ketchup instead of tomato paste? Or should I just spend the 50 cents and pick up some tomato paste next time I’m at the store? :)

Reply

Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

Haha I’m not sure it would be crazy… it just wont taste the same. But hey, ketchup is good on anything. I’d do it!

Reply

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