I usually make these meatballs when I throw a party or a wild edibles tasting, and keep some for myself in the freezer for my quick meals. They’re the easiest way to approach weeds for beginners, who are not used to a more “veggie” style meal.

plantain meatballs, Ribwort Plantain recipe


  • 500g Narrowleaf Plantain leaves (Broadleaf Plantain as well)
  • 400g ground beef
  • 100g fresh pork sausage
  • ½ onion
  • 1 egg
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive oil


Boil Plantain in salted water, squeeze the water out and chop. Time depends on plantain species (P.lanceolata or P.major); narrowleaf plantain is more tender, otherwise use only younger leaves.

Cook onion and plantain for some minutes in a large frying pan with oil.

Mix in a big bowl the ground beef, sausage, egg, black ground pepper, and salt. Mix very well. Add cooked plantain and mix again. It works well to squish the mixture with your hands.

Optional step: the meatballs shoul be tender once they’re cooked. The fattier the meat you use, the more tender your meatballs will be. If you plan to avoid the sausage, than add some stale bread soaked in milk.

plantain meatballs, polpette piantaggine

Scoop one spoon of the mixture into your hand and form little balls (about the size of ping pong balls). Roll meatballs in panko. Bring a graesed frying pan to the stove and pan-fry the meatballs until lighly brown.

Serve immediately or freeze: let the cooked meatballs cool completely, then transfer to a freezer container or bag. They are delicious even when cold, served as appetizer.

I like them with a glass of light-bodied and laced with grippy tannins red wine (Valtellina superiore, Grumello or Sassella).

Narrowleaf Plantain Meatballs

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