Do you have days when you really don’t want to go to the shops but want something tasty for dinner? (But don’t want a take-away!) Or maybe, the budget is a bit tight, but you still want to eat well? Well give these black bean chia koftas a go!
This recipe uses basics in the store cupboard and taste delicious; gentle warming and aromatic spiced koftas complemented by a mild gingery, slightly sweet curry sauce (by all means, if you like your dishes very hot, add more chillies!).
These koftas are also easy to make. All you need is a blender to whizz everything together, chill the mixture for 15 mins, roll into balls, then bake or pan-fry. Who said eating healthily needed to be expensive or time-consuming?!
These koftas are meat-free and by using gluten-free oats, they are suitable for coeliacs. You can also substitute the black beans with other pulses like canned butter beans, green lentils or black-eyed beans. By using chia seeds as a binding agent, no eggs are required, making these koftas suitable for vegans.
Fresh herbs (fresh parsley or coriander) and lemon zest add freshness and fragrance. To boost the protein content, I love adding protein powder (pea, soya bean and whey varieties work well); if you have run out, you can substitute for more oats or ground flaxseed.
These koftas and the accompanying curry sauce freeze well too. I love my curry sauce slightly on the chunky side (see photos), but if you like it more smooth, blend for a little longer.
Feeds: 2-3 (depending on how hungry you are!)
Preparation time: 25 mins (plus 15 mins chilling time). If pan-frying: approx. 12 mins to cook, if baking, 18-20 mins at 170°C.
For the koftas:
- 1 X 400g can of black beans (or beans of your choice)
- 50g rolled oats (gluten-free if required)
- ½ tsp Vitalising superpowder or ground turmeric
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 4-5 garlic cloves
- Large bunch or coriander or parsley (or a mixture of both); about 35g
- 4 tbsp protein powder (soya bean, pea or whey)
- 4 tbsp chia seeds
- Juice from half a lemon
- Zest from 1 lemon
- 1 tsp tamari
- ½ tsp salt
- Ground pepper, to taste
- 1 red chilli (or more plus seeds if you like it hot!), roughly chopped
For the curry sauce:
- 2 medium red onions, peeled and chopped finely
- 30g root ginger, peeled and chopped finely
- 6 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tbsp curry powder
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp Vitalising superpowder or turmeric
- 20g chia seeds or wholemeal flour (as a thickener)
- 500ml vegetable stock
- 1 tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 tbsp tamari/ soya sauce
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tbsp protein powder (this makes the sauce creamier)
- Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor, except the red chilli (so you can see flecks of red in the koftas once cooked!). Whizz to combine well to form a thick paste.
- Transfer the mixture into a bowl and stir in the chopped chilli. Allow to set in the fridge for 15 mins (or freezer for 10 mins).
- While chilling, prepare the sauce.
- Sauce. In a deep-bottomed pan, gently fry the chopped red onions for about 5 mins, until soft. Then add the chopped ginger and crushed garlic and cook for a further 5 mins.
- Add the spices and cook for a further minute, until the spices give off their aroma, (take care to prevent the spices from burning, otherwise the sauce will taste bitter).
- Stir in the thickening agent (chia seeds or wholemeal flour) and add the stock. Add the coconut sugar, tamari/ soya sauce and protein powder. Mix well. Heat for about 3 more mins then take off the heat.
- Using a stick blender, whizz to the desired consistency. Set aside to serve with the koftas.
- Koftas. Roll the chilled mixture into small balls, about 2.5cm in size. These can be pan-fried on a low heat using a little coconut oil, for about 12 mins, turning each kofta halfway through. Alternatively, they can be baked in the oven at 170°C for 15-18 mins, again turning them halfway through.
- I love serving this with cauliflower coriander rice. (Simply sauté blitzed cauliflower and coriander and garlic for 5-10 mins). Enjoy!
Don’t forget you can find my favourite recipes in my FREE eBook here.