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Tofu Cocktail “Meat”balls

June 16, 2010

Photo by Gerik

After 30  years in the food service and catering profession, I feel I can say with all honesty that catering can be such fun.  Yes, there is back breaking work that goes on but the satisfaction at the end of the day knowing that you succeeded in making someone’s party a success is very rewarding and in its own way, a lot of fun.

It’s amazing to me how many twists there are in each party.  Each party brings a mix of allergies to certain foods, diet restrictions or on occasion, a vegan or two. No matter the issue, everyone has to be made to feel part of the group and well taken care of. Most menus should include a few items that are prepared with those customers in mind.

The Tofu Meatball recipe was a collective effort with a dear friend of mine, Fusun.  I first met Fusun in Lincoln (Neb) when she approached me about learning how to bake bread. She asked if she could work for free for a few weeks with our master baker.  To the delight of everyone and their taste buds, she flourished at baking and as the result, she combined her Ph.D. in Chemistry and her baking skills to craft the most wonderful vegan cheesecakes.  She quickly built a successful bakery in her home and began shipping cheesecakes to customers all over the United States.  Because of her being a vegan and being so committed to creating and sustaining good, flavorful vegan foods, I knew Fusun would be the perfect person to work on my recipe.

I started out with the idea for a beautiful vegan meatball to serve with dipping sauces for parties.  Little-by-little the recipe came together but something was always missing.  Fusun stopped by my office one day and in frustration I handed her the recipe and she agreed to work on it.  What you see below is our recipe.  It has been tested on the most critical of all customers, her teenage sons and college students, so I know it’s a winner.

Tofu Cocktail Balls

Serves 6 (5 per person)

1 sleeve Saltine Crackers

1 ½ cups (6 oz pkg) Sliced Almonds

1 T. dry Onion Soup Mix (stir pkg. first)

2 T. vegan dry gravy mix (prefer Leahey Gardens Brand or Simply Organics Mushroom Sauce from HyVee also works)

½ T. fresh garlic, minced

¼ c. onion, diced

½ tsp. Crushed Red Pepper

1 pkg. Firm Tofu (12.3 oz size)

1 pkg. Morning Star Meal Starter, Griller Recipe Crumbles

Crush the saltine crackers along with the almonds in a food processor until fine.

Place all ingredients in a mixer bowl and mix with an electric mixer until the mixture begins to hold together and can be scooped into balls.

Using a number 40 scoop or a teaspoon, scoop and shape the mixture into 1-1 ½ inch meatballs rolling until smooth.  Balls may be stored in the refrigerator until party time or frozen for later use.  Also, they bake in the oven rather well.

Heat about 2 inches of oil in a saucepan or Fry Daddy until the oil reaches 350 degrees.  Fry the meatballs until they are a pretty golden brown.  The centers will not be done so place them on a baking sheet and bake them in the oven until the centers reach 140 degrees with a thermometer.

Serve with the dipping sauces of your choice.  I’ve featured Sweet Chili Sauce in this picture but others we have enjoyed are Honey Mustard, BBQ Sauce and even Ranch dressing.

One Comment leave one →
  1. December 3, 2010 6:28 pm

    well, if you really want to be healthy, i believe that veggan foods are the best ,*~

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