These meatless meatballs can also be found in Italian menus and are traditionally used for pasta dishes. Easy and versatile, these eggplant meatballs work well as appetizers too and allow for a variety of spices and flavors.
1 medium-size eggplant (about 1–1/2 pounds), peeled and chopped
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment. Set aside.
Add eggplant to a medium pot of boiling water and cook 8 – 10 minutes until it is soft. Drain eggplant well. Either squeeze out the eggplant in a clean kitchen towel or press out the eggplant in a strainer to remove excess liquid.
Transfer eggplant to a bowl and add in the garlic, flour, parmesan cheese (if using), egg, olive oil and spices. Mix well.
Using a cookie scoop or a spoon, scoop out about 2 tablespoons of mixture and gently form into a ball. If the mixture will not hold the shape, add a bit more flour.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until firm to the touch.
Gently toss together the meatballs and the sauce, and serve over pasta with your favorite tomato or marinara sauce.
These may be made ahead of time and refrigerated. Reheat to serve as side or main dish with pasta
Serve warm or room temperature with marinara sauce for dipping as appetizers