Have you ever been at Christmas lunch and just as the stuffing is being served, you notice a lowly sad looking vegetarian at the end of table? That vegetarian was once me… knowing how tasty stuffing is and missing out because it had been stuffed (as it usually is) inside some sort of animal.
Stuffing is part of my mental ‘traditional Christmas lunch’ so to miss out on Christmas day, it became a day of the year I really missed eating meat. It wasn’t the ham I was lusting after… but what was inside.
A few years ago my Uncle, in all his genius, had saved me some stuffing (pre stuff). He oven baked little morsels of comforting breadcrumbs so I could too, enjoy the stuffing at Christmas lunch. What was a very simple idea in theory, but often overlooked lit up my christmas lunch entirely and I was one satisfied girl.
This recipe is a fairly simple one that wouldn’t add to much extra work to the Christmas Day banquet, but also easy enough to make el solo sans animal. I made the stuffing by itself then rolled into little bite sized balls.
The reason stuffing is used is because breadcrumbs soak up all the flavours around them, so when making the stuffing it’s important to be heavy handed on the flavours. This recipes calls for lots of thyme and buttery sage, some parmesan cheese, a dash of red wine and a large onion that has been cooked slowly until transparent and starting to caramelize. Salt and pepper are a must and a decent glug of olive oil to oven bake until crispy on the outside.
This recipe was part of a Virtual Christmas Lunch Party with fellow Australian Food Bloggers and I am super glad to be able to share my recipe on a virtual table of tasty goodness with such fantastic food bloggers. Check out the other delicious recipes being shared:
Have you got a Christmas recipe you always make? Share in the comments below!
Have a wonderful Christmas, Bec x
Vegetarian Stuffing Balls
- 1 large brown onion
- 1 cup stuffing mix
- 2 cups breadcrumbs
- handful of fresh sage
- handful of fresh thyme
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon of red wine optional
- tablespoon of butter
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup milk
- salt and pepper
- olive oil
- Dice the onion and heat some olive oil in a medium sized fry pan. Fry onion until translucent and soft - about 4-5 minutes. If you want to add some red wine, add for the last 2 minutes and cook off the alcohol.
- Whilst onions are cooking, finely chop the thyme and sage.
- Add the butter to the frypan and onions, then add your herbs. Fry for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
- Once onion herb mix has cooled, combine with the stuffing mix and bread crumbs in a large bowl. Add the parmesan cheese and salt and pepper.
- In a seperate smaller bowl, combine the 2 eggs and milk. Once onion and bread crumbs are mixed, add the egg mixture and combine until the stuffing mix is firm enough to be able to roll into a ball. (Wet hands make the rolling easier)
- Roll the stuffing mixture into evenly shaped balls and place on a lightly poled baking tray
- Drizzle in olive oil and cook in the oven at 200 deg cel for 25-30 minutes until crispy and slightly browned.
- Serve with gravy.
Wetting your hands slightly before rolling each ball makes it a lot easier to roll.