Tuesday, April 10

Parmesan & Herb Quinoa Cakes

Quinoa is having a big moment in the health food world (and has been for a while now) and lately I’ve been seeing quinoa cakes and patties on the menu at some of my favorite restaurants. When cooked, the cakes get a super crunchy crust but still stay light and fluffy inside. It’s a great way to use leftover quinoa and there are endless flavor combinations to try out, although I’m partial to this parmesan and herb version. I served an extra-large version for dinner with sour cream but the possibilities are endless: with poached eggs for brunch, over a green salad, topped with tomato sauce, etc. Mini versions would make a great appetizer too.

Parmesan & Herb Quinoa Cakes:
  • Add 1 c. quinoa to 2 1/2 c. cold water, bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer, cover with a lid, and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until tender. Let cool.*
  • Lightly beat 3 eggs and combine with 2 c. cooked quinoa in a large bowl.
  • Mix in 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese, 2 tbsp. each of minced chives and minced basil, 1/2 c. panko breadcrumbs, 3 minced garlic cloves, 1/2 minced yellow onion, and the zest of 1/2 lemon.
  • Let mixture stand for a minute so that the breadcrumbs can absorb some of the moisture.**
  • Roll the quinoa mixture into 5-6 large balls and place on a plate or baking tray.
  • Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add in the quinoa balls*** and use the back of a spatula to flatten into disks.
  • Cover the skillet with a lid and cook for 4-5 minutes per side, or until golden brown.
  • Remove and repeat until all cakes are cooked.
  • Divide onto plates and serve with sour cream (optional).

Serves two - three
*This is a great way to use leftover quinoa. Just keep in the fridge and bring to room temperature before mixing.
**If more moisture is needed to form balls, add a little olive oil, beaten egg, or water.
***The cakes will probably need to be cooked in a few batches with more oil/butter added before each new batch.