I tried on a pair of jeans last week that used to fit me. With room to spare. And now they don’t. Given that all my current jeans are hand-me-downs from my designer-shop-a-holic friend, I simply must do something about this. Enter quinoa. I have heard loads about this complete protein and even seen some recipes here and there that have struck my fancy and I finally decided it’s time to lay off the pumpkin and chocolate themed desserts for a bit while I work on buttoning my pants again. I was certainly skeptical about these quinoa cakes. First, who uses quinoa and cake in the same sentence? Secondly, the little tails on quinoa scare me. And third, these quinoa cakes were supposed to go in a salad, which seemed like health food overkill even if I am on a diet.
I read on another website that someone enjoyed these with a lemon-garlic aioli sauce (I’m certain aioli is either French or Italian for “unhealthy”). I looked up the recipe, omitted half a cup of the oil to help make it designer-jean-friendly and smeared it on my quinoa cakes. And now I’m a quinoa cake convert. These are absolutely delicious. I enjoyed them so much that I plan on making another batch soon, which says a lot. I also am thinking about a sweet version for breakfast. Because, you know, we’ve already had the discussion about how I won’t eat anything savory for breakfast, no matter how delicious it is.
Source: Nicole @ Heat Oven to 350
These patties are a new favorite source of protein for me! I eat them with the lemon-garlic aioli as a snack or serve several of them with a veggie for my lunch!
- Combine the quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the onion, queso fresco, cumin and red pepper flakes. Add the bread crumbs, stir, and let sit for a few minutes so the crumbs can absorb some of the moisture. At this point, you should have a mixture you can easily form into twelve 1-inch patties. Nicole and I err on the very moist side because it makes for a not-overly-dry patty, but you can add more bread crumbs, a bit at a time, to firm up the mixture, if need be. Conversely, a bit more beaten egg or water can be used to moisten the mixture.
- Heat half the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat, add 6 patties, if they'll fit with some room between each, cover, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the bottoms are deeply browned. Turn up the heat if there is no browning after 10 minutes and continue to cook until the patties are browned. Carefully flip the patties with a spatula and cook the second sides for 7 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the skillet and cool on a wire rack while you repeat with the remaining patties. Alternatively, the quinoa mixture keeps nicely in the refrigerator for a few days; you can cook patties to order, if you prefer.
- Press the garlic through a press and combine with the salt in a medium metal bowl. Whisk in the egg yolks, water, and lemon juice. Set the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water (do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water) and whisk constantly until mixture thickens and instant-read thermometer inserted into the mixture registers 140F for 3 minutes. Remove the bowl from over the water. Whisking occasionally, cool the mixture to room temperature, about 10 minutes. Place the mixture in a food processor and turn on. Gradually pour the oil mixture in a thin slow stream until the aioli is thick. Season to taste with pepper and more salt, if desired.