Vegetarian and filling meal for the family!
I am trying to make a conscious effort to increase the legumes (pulses) that we eat, with the goal of eating them 4-5 times per week. So here is a recipe I am making quite a lot lately that is really yummy! The creaminess or the beans and the tanginess of the tomato sauce work really well accompanied by polenta (I cheat and use the express one that is ready in 5 minutes; who has time to stir a proper polenta for 2/3 hours!)
I always make polenta in excess and then we re-heat it with some cheese the next day or into polenta chips.
- 1 can of borlotti beans
- 2 1/2 cups good quality passata
- 1/2 cup cream cheese
- 3-4 tbsp breadcrumbs
- Olive oil
- Half an onion
- Half a small carrot
- Dry the beans and put them in a blender with 1 tbsp of olive oil.
- Whizz them up until smooth.
- Put the mixture into a bowl and add the cream cheese, salt and breadcrumbs (I always have breadcrumbs ready in a container as I use them so much, but if you don’t have them you can either buy them or grate/blitz some stale bread). You have to use your judgement when it comes to how many tablespoons of breadcrumbs, they have to be enough so that your mixture is not sticky.
- Now onto the tomato sauce. Heat up some olive oil in a pan with some chopped up onion and carrot (to make the soffritto). Let it cook on a low heat for 10 minutes.
- Once softened add the passata and some salt. Let it simmer on a low heat for about 15 minutes, mixing from time to time to ensure it doesn’t burn at the bottom. In the meantime, shape your polpette, by taking 1 tablespoon of mixture, rolling it between your hands and slightly flattening them like patties.
- Once the sauce is starting to thicken, put in your polpette and make sure they are nicely covered by the sauce.
- Cook them for a further 10 minutes, delicately turning them half way through, until the sauce has nicely thickened.