Prepare your flax or chia eggs by combining 2 tablespoons of seeds with 6 tablespoons of water in a small bowl and set aside to thicken. Then line a loaf pan with parchment paper and preheat your oven to 400 degrees F convection bake.
Add the chopped carrots and onion to a skillet and dry sauté for 5-7 minutes, until softened. Add a tablespoon or two of water if needed to prevent sticking.
Meanwhile, add the chickpeas to a large mixing bowl and mash with a fork, without over mashing. You want most of the chickpeas crushed, but no need to make sure every single one is mashed.
Then add the sautéed veggies along with the tamari, chia eggs and all the seasoning (but NOT your smoked maple glaze ingredients) to the same bowl and mix well. Make sure to mix thoroughly to distribute the chia eggs and seasoning very well. Then taste and add salt and pepper, if needed.
Pour the mixture into your prepared loaf pan and press down firmly using your hands or a silicone spatural and smooth the top. Bake for 30 minutes and remove from the oven.
While the loaf is baking, combine all the glaze ingredients in a small pot and bring to a medium boil and cook for 10 minutes, whisking often. This will thicken your sauce slightly.
Brush about one third of the glaze over your meatloaf with a silicone brush and return to the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes before transfering to a cuting board. Use the parchment paper to lift and transfer the loaf. Let cool on your cutting board for at least 10 minutes longer, and then slice and serve with the extra glaze.
If you're avoiding wheat, you may sub the breadcrumbs for rolled oats, gluten free, if needed. Breadcrumbs hold together a little firmer, but the oats also work well.Mash the chickpeas in a mixing bowl with a large fork, rather than tossing into a food processor to avoid overly mashing your ingredients. You don't want overly processed ingredients here, or that may result in a mushy textured chickpea meatloaf.If you don't have a convection bake oven, increase the oven temperature by 25 degrees and cook for the same amount of time. Watch carefully.Allow for extra time to let your loaf cool and set for at least 20 minutes in total. This will make your chickpea meatloaf much easier to slice and serve.Play with the seasoning! Add more or less of the spices you like, to your taste. If you want to serve this for Thanksgiving, you might consider adding some sage, thyme and nutmeg to the mix and skipping the smoked paprika. If you don't want any heat, skip the cayenne. Have fun and make it your own!For a quicker glaze, or if you don't have tomato paste, sub the broth and tomato paste for ketchup, and mix with the maple syrup, smoked paprika and cayenne (if using). Then glaze your chickpea meatloaf as directed, but no need to simmer the sauce first.