Ok, so here’s a story I rarely tell anyone because it involves me being super dumb. A horribly misguided decision that literally could have been disastrous. K, ready? I was at the mall, circa 7th grade, doing what tweens do. Shoot, it just occurred to be that I was a tween before the word tween was even invented. Sooo… there’s that. I was with my friend, um let’s call her Nadine to protect the guilty, and we were wandering aimlessly through the mall.
Nadine (is Nadine a real name? I’m sure there are people named Nadine, no?) was one of those people that would literally do anything if it meant a good story or a laugh. It didn’t matter how awkward or bizarre, or out of your comfort zone it was. Nadine was game. And me? I was apparently along for the ride.
So we wandered aimlessly around the mall when suddenly we were approached by a strange man. He was probably early twenties and at this point in my life I remember nothing about him besides his badge and clipboard and eventual outward displays of annoyance toward Nadine. He asked if we wanted to watch a quick movie trailer and answer some questions.
We looked at each other. I assessed Nadine for signs of distress or concern. She had none. We clearly had nothing better to do so we said “ohhhkay,” thinking it would be an immediate, momentary kinda thing.
The man proceeded to lead us OUT of the mall to a room in the dark adjacent building. The moment I walked out of the mall I had a million bells and whistles going STRANGER DANGER HELLO WTF ARE YOU DOING. PEOPLE, you have a gut for a reason. In situations like this you should follow it and run farrrr away. I didn’t.
So what happened? He showed us a cartoon movie clip about a cautious adult man that transformed magically to a boy and lived a few days learning to be reckless and carefree again. He asked our impressions of the movie and I thoughtfully said, “oh like that movie Big with Tom Hanks?!” and Nadine said something completely off the wall (cue eye roll from said man) and we finished the few questions and went back into the mall like nothing happened.
So yeah, there it is. A dumb moment of my life that I wanted to share because sure, nothing horrible happened to me. But I think back on that moment thinking how DUMB I was to even agree to it! Guys, if you’re reading this you’re probably old enough to know this already. BUT, stranger danger!! Don’t go with strangers. Listen to your gut. Don’t risk your life for fear of being rude, okay?!
Ok, now that I told you a dumb moment in my life, I think it’s only fair you tell me one of yours in the comments below. It’s takes balls to admit our failures. It takes big ol’ VEGETARIAN BALLS!! Get it get it?! See what I did there?!
I tied the thing back to the thing and now we’re going to talk about vegetarian “meat” balls. Clever, right? So let’s make some balls…
Add the egg and coconut oil and process again until everything in combined, about 10 seconds.
Roll the batter into 12 balls, and pace on a lined baking pan.
Bake for 4 minutes, roll the balls to flip them a bit and bake for another 4 minutes.
Remove the “meat” balls from the oven and place in warmed sauce. Keep the balls in the sauce until ready to serve.
- ½ cup whole almonds
- ¼ cup whole flax seeds
- ¼ cup hemp hearts
- ¼ cup pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds)
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 15 - 20 oz. roasted garlic pasta sauce
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In your food processor, process the whole almonds, flax seeds, hemp hearts, pepitas, and garlic cloves until chunky, about 20 seconds.
- Add the sea salt, cumin, onion powder, chili powder, and oregano, and process for another 5 seconds.
- Add the egg and coconut oil and process again until everything in combined, about 10 seconds.
- Roll the batter into 12 balls, and pace on a lined baking pan.
- Bake for 4 minutes, roll the balls to flip them a bit and bake for another 4 minutes.
- Remove the "meat" balls from the oven and place in warmed sauce.
- Keep the balls in the sauce until ready to serve.
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