1cupof dried brown lentils, picked over and rinsed
2cupsof vegetable broth (or water)
8ouncesof mushrooms, sliced
1/2cupof old-fashioned oats
1/2cupof flat-leaf parsley leaves
1teaspoonof dried oregano
1/2teaspoonof red pepper flakes
1/2teaspoonof dried thyme
1/2teaspoonof dried tarragon
2Tablespoonsof olive oil
1mediumwhite onion, chopped
3-4garlic cloves, minced
1/4cupof red wine (if you don't want to use alcohol, you can substitute with vegetable broth)
1Tablespoonof soy sauce (we used soy-free soy sauce, but either way, this is optional)
sea salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine lentils, bay leaf, and vegetable broth/water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. (Don’t worry, you want the lentils to be a little undercooked.) Remove from heat, drain and let cool for a few minutes. Discard the bay leaf.
In a food processor, combine the mushrooms, oats, lentils, parsley and spices (oregano, red pepper flakes, thyme and tarragon). Pulse/blend until the mixture is pretty well pulverized but not mush.
In a large skillet over medium heat, warm the olive oil, then add the chopped onion and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until onions are translucent and turning golden at the edges, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for about 30 seconds. Stir in lentil-mushroom mixture and cook until browned, about 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add red wine and soy sauce to skillet. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until liquid has been absorbed. Remove from heat and, if you’re using a pan that retains heat like cast iron, transfer the mixture to a heat-safe bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow the mixture to cool until it is comfortable to handle.
Use your hands to scoop up one small handful of the mixture at a time, shaping it into a golf-ball sized ball (about 1 1/2-inch diameter). Place each “meatball” onto the baking sheet, leaving an inch of space around each one (you should end up with 15 or more meatballs). Bake for 35 minutes, or until golden brown.