There are many ways to make meatless meatballs. Some folks use seitan; others use some form of soy byproduct, like tofu. We want to propose an alternative consisting of only one unrefined ingredient: mushrooms. Not any mushroom — the King oyster mushroom.
We made these mushroom meatballs both vegan and gluten-free, following the principle of simplicity. We have to emulate the properties of mincemeat and find a suitable eggless binder to keep everything together. We'll do it by using the least amount of ingredients possible.
First, let's tackle the ratio of lean to fatty meat you find in classic mince. For the lean part, we'll shred the king oyster mushrooms into fine bits. For the fats, we'll make a cream of rice flour and extra virgin olive oil. You can get leaner or fattier mushroom mince by controlling the amount of oil used.
Adding fats adds flavour to the otherwise plain mushrooms, and gives these plant-based meatballs a juicier texture. And of course, we'll add generous amounts of Italian spices and seasoning for extra flavour!
Then, we'll make a classic chia-egg binder to replace eggs. You can use flax-eggs if you prefer. By the way, if you are not intolerant to gluten, you can also replace rice flour with wheat flour. And if you couldn't find any king oyster mushrooms, shiitakes are a viable alternative.
The whole recipe will take you around 40 minutes, from blitzing to eating. Oh, and these balls are healthy too! A portion of 4 "veggballs" gives you 20% RDI for fibres, 11% RDI for proteins, and 8% RDI for carbs in just 200 calories. Compare that to 4 regular meatballs and you'll get four times fewer saturated fats and five times more fibres. Neat!