Opa! Some Cyprus Love: Vegan Keftedes, the Greek Cypriot Meatball Recipe

26 Mar

This favorite Cyprus dish is a common one and once we stopped eating meat in our house, I knew that I would have to Veganize my mother-in-law’s recipe.  If you are watching your cholesterol or have been looking for a meat-less-ball recipe with a LOT of taste, you have found it!

Opa! Greek Cypriot Fried Meatballs

Opa! Greek Cypriot Fried Meatballs

(Υια, κύπριους φίλους μας! Γνωρίζω ότι το χοιρινό & αυγού χρησιμοποιείται για αυτό το πιάτο παραδοσιακά. Είμαι περίεργος, ποιος ξέρει από οποιοδήποτε κρέας εναλλακτική λύση στην Κύπρο; Περιμένω κάθε χρόνο αλλά δεν βρίσκω.)

This dish takes a little bit of prep but the rewards are worth it.  This is a great time to pull out the food processors, if you have one, to lighten the prep work.  More pictures will come soon…

What you need for 5-8 hungry people:

Some of the ingredients for our Vegan Keftedes

Some of the ingredients for our Vegan Keftedes

  • 2 packages (24 oz) of vegan meat crumbles (we prefer Lightlife Smart Ground veggie protein crumbles)
  • 1 – 1 1/2 large grated potatoes
  • 1- 1 1/2 large yellow onion (soft ball size) grated or chopped small in food processor ***but make sure it doesn’t turn to mush***
  • 4 large lemons
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
  • 2 slices of whole grain bread to grate and make bread crumbs (or 1/2- 1 cup of bread crumbs from the container but I recommend the bread, highly)
  • 1-2 egg substitutes  (I just use one, some may want the second just in case)
  • 2 tbsp of cinnamon (you can play with this, we like a bit more)
  • 1 tbsp Greek seasoning (or make your own using a combo of the following: dried oregano, dried thyme, dried basil, dried marjoram, dried minced onion)
  • 1 tbsp sea salt
  • oil for frying (olive or canola oil)

Instructions:

  1. Heat oven to 350 (before frying the meatballs, I prefer to bake them for a little bit so that they don’t fall apart as easily)
  2. Drain grated potatoes and squeeze juice from 2 lemons for flavor and to protect the color from changing to brown due to oxidation
  3. Make egg substitute (this is how we make ours)
  4. Add vegan crumbles, potato (we like to make it so it is 1:1 meat/potato), onion, parsley, bread crumbs (I simply rub the slices in my hands, little chunks the size of chocolate chips are great too), egg substitute, cinnamon, Greek seasoning and salt and mix.  (This is one dish that I use my hands for, get in there ;))
  5. If too wet, add more bread crumbs (from scratch) but it should be moist.  Make oval balls in your palm and place on baking sheet an inch apart.
  6. Heat oil in pan and place meat-less-balls in the oven for 8 minutes, until slightly hardened.  Remove and place in oil and cook until browned to your liking.
  7. Place vegan keftedes on paper towel lined plate to absorb the oil
  8. Serve with lemon slices

Additional Suggestions/Ideas that are favorites in our home…

(Vegan plain yoghurt and a fresh salad with lemon & Greek olive oil for dressing or one of your choice complement this dish.  Also, Tahini mixed with water, lemon and salt (tashi) is awesome to dip in or to line a pita with and make a wrap with the keftedes and some chopped cucumber, tomatoes, parsley and onion.  )

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One Response to “Opa! Some Cyprus Love: Vegan Keftedes, the Greek Cypriot Meatball Recipe”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Meatless Monday: Lemon Infused Zucchini Bean Salad Recipe | Try it Vegan - June 10, 2013

    […] ***This also goes very well as a side with our Vegan Cypriot Greek Meatballs -Keftedes*** […]

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