It's funny how I've never really been a fan of eggplants until recently. I just never really enjoyed the texture, and it seems that the few eggplant dishes that I have tried it, it was bitter, slimy, or not seasoned right... Well that all changed a few weeks ago when I decided to give it another try, and I actually fell in love with it. It's so weird, it's kind of like when I was a child I hated onions and garlic, and now in my adult years I can NOT live without them! Maybe as I've gotten older, my taste buds have also evolved more; or maybe it's because I have a new (not that new) found love for vegetables?
Just the other day I was talking to a friend about my family's diet, and realized, no I don't hate meat, I just love vegetables! One reason is that there are so many health benefits from incorporating more produce in your diet. Not to mention, I love the challenge of creating a meal that is savory, hearty, and satisfying with just vegetables... like this one!
I was inspired to create this recipe for a friend of mine who loves Subway's Meatball Sub; I would say on average she eats them once every 2 weeks. And as of recently she has made the decision to cut back on meat and dairy due to some heath issues. Now I already know the journey to eating healthier is sometimes a little tough in the beginning, because you’re craving for those greasy fast food meals can be out of control at times.
So I figured, if you're going to break and have fast food, make it yourself, and make a healthier version that will satisfy all your taste bud needs... and if you aren't looking to give up meat, this is still a dish that you should definitely try, and I'm sure you will love it too!
Now you will notice in the below directions, for the tomato sauce I just used a can of my favorite sauce and spiced it up a bit (Click here to see how I spicy up my store bought pasta sauce). I also added some fresh basil leaves, and a sprinkle of that vegan crack... Nutritional Yeast, which gives you the taste of Parmesan cheese... Oh, and if you're wondering why they're called “Eggplant Neat'balls"... Well I think they're pretty neat, and I also figured it sounded a lot better than Eggplant Balls. lol