CAULIFLOWER ARANCINI BALLS
I’m aware that traditionally, Arancini Balls are Italian rice balls with mozzarella or meat and are coated with breadcrumbs then deep fried. But everything in that sentence literally makes my stomach churn. Most things that are fried and especially breadcrumbed will bloat me and make me feel so heavy and unwell for the rest of the day. So I decided to come up wth a healthier version that is also gluten free. Cauliflower is the obvious choice since I often make cauliflower ‘rice’ and substituting the meat for a vegetarian protein option such as tofu was the smartest choice as well. Finally the much healthier option to bake and not fry was a no brainer for me as I have never fried anything coated in breadcrumbs. I know that may be hard to believe but I have never fried things like crumbed schnitzel or crumbed calamari. I have only ever baked ‘crumbed’ food. The dripping fried oil just doesn’t appeal to me.
Now this is quite a messy dish to make but once you make a couple of them, you will find it a breeze. Just get past the first 2 or 3 and your hands will adapt on how to roll the wet mixture. I found that washing my hands after making every 5 balls and starting with clean hands again, made it easier to form the ball mixture.
If you watched my Instagram stories, you would have seen my son eating these Cauliflower Arancini Balls and thinking they were chicken meatballs. They are seriously delicious and one of the best ways to get children and adults to enjoy this overlooked vegetable and its amazing versatility. My son was so shocked and upset at me for tricking him! But in the end, to my complete and utter shock, he went for a second one! In my book, that a winner and so worth the effort! Enjoy x
Makes 15 large balls
Preparation and Cooking Time: 1 hour
500g cauliflower florets
100g ORGRAN gluten free plain flour
2 eggs lightly whisked or ORGRAN egg substitute
100g tasty cheese grated or vegan cheese
1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
2 garlic cloves crushed
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp freshly grinder pepper
(optional: 1 tsp psyllium husk)
150g ORGRAN Premium Breadcrumbs
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp sea salt
Herbed Tofu Filling:
100g tofu, mashed with a fork
150g cream cheese, mashed with a fork Or vegan cheese
1 tbs finely chopped parsley
1 tbs finely chopped mint
2 tbs finely chopped chives
Preheat oven 180C fan forced.
Prepare and combine breadcrumb mixture in wide base bowl. Set aside.
Combine tofu filling well. Place large piece of cling wrap on bench and place tofu mixture onto cling wrap.Fold over one side of the cling wrap to overlap the mixture and roll it out forming a 3cm thick cylinder using the palms of your hands to help thin out the mixture. Once cylinder has been formed, cut into 15 equal pieces. Set aside.
Either grate cauliflower florets or place into a food processor until rice like in texture. In a large bowl add all other ingredients listed in the cauliflower mixture and combine well with a large spoon.
Take a heaped tablespoon of cauliflower in your hand and flatten it covering the entire palm of your hand. Place a piece of herbed tofu mixture in the centre, then gently squeeze and mould the edges around the tofu until it is covered.
Place the ball in the breadcrumb mixture and cover well, rolling or patting the breadcrumbs into the ball. Place onto a a tray with baking paper.
Repeat process 5 and 6.
Spray all balls with a generous amount of olive oil or coconut oil and cook for 15-20 or until golden brown.
Serve immediately with a heated gf pasta tomato sauce or a home made tomato sauce and side salad.
If there are leftovers, these cauliflower balls can be reheated the next day either in the oven or microwave and taste just as delicious!