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Spanish Chickpea Balls with Romesco Sauce

Spanish Chickpea Balls with Romesco Sauce

Serves 6

2 x 400g cans chickpeas, rinsed, drained
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 Tbsp finely grated lemon rind
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp sweet paprika
60g (2/3 cup) dried (packaged) multigrain breadcrumbs
2 Tbsp plain flour
2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh continental parsley
1 egg, lightly whisked
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
125ml (1/2 cup) vegetable oil
100g pkt baby rocket leaves
2 Tbsp olive oil
Lemon wedges, to serve

Romesco Sauce:
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 (about 40g) slice of crusty bread, crusts removed, coarsely chopped
65g (1/2 cup) slivered almonds
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 (about 200g) Always Fresh Fire Roasted Whole Peppers
1 long fresh red chilli, coarsely chopped
1 Tbsp chopped fresh continental parsley
1 Tbsp chopped fresh coriander
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
300g can Edgell Tomato Supreme

1. To Make the Sauce: Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Cook bread and almonds, stirring, for 2-3 minutes or until golden. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Set aside to cool slightly. Transfer to a food processor. Add the peppers, chilli, parsley, coriander and paprika. Process until combined. Add the tomato and process until combined. Transfer to a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap.
Process chickpeas, garlic, lemon rind, coriander, cumin and paprika in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl. Add breadcrumbs, flour, parsley and egg. Use a fork to stir until mixture just starts to come together. Stir in 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Roll tablespoonfuls of mixture into balls. Place on a tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to chill.
2. Heat vegetable oil in a heavy-based frying pan over medium heat. Cook one-third of the chickpea balls, turning occasionally, for 4 minutes or until golden brown and heated through. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Repeat with remaining balls in 2 more batches, reheating oil between batches.
3. Combine rocket, olive oil and remaining lemon juice in a bowl. Serve with chickpea balls drizzled with sauce and lemon wedges.

To make the Romesco sauce ahead, transfer it to an airtight container and top with a layer of olive oil. It stores for up to 1 week in the fridge and can also be frozen for up to 3 months.

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