01 December 2011

chickpea & quinoa cakes with curry dipping sauce

Life is crazy bonkers right now. My first Christmas concert as a primary school music teacher is a week away and I'd say the stress level is medium to high and ascending quickly. Report cards are due Monday, and I only recently learned all the names of my 200+ students. It's officially Christmas season and I can't foresee an afternoon available to go cut down our Christmas tree. I'm too tired to walk to the storage closet and get out our pitifully wee bag of Christmas decorations, and forget about making any of the millions of lovely things I gawk on the bus on the way to school on craftgawker.com. Who has time for handmade advent calendars, really?

I hate that the advent season has turned into something so not like waiting. If anything, we wait for it to be over so we can breathe a sigh of relief and start thinking about wearing our skinny jeans again. It's too busy to even go shopping for proper groceries around here.

Here's what happened the other night when 5:30 rolled around and no one had made dinner yet. The ramen packages were looking appealing... and I'm not one to balk at ramen. But I felt like cooking and although ramen preparation technically involved the application of heat to edible substances I feel like I can hardly call that cooking. So I dreamed up this recipe, born directly from the ingredients I found staring at me in my cupboards. Actually, I kind of liked it. OK, fine, it was pretty darn good and worth sharing so, here it is.

I only suggest that if you make these for your husband who is more of a meat-and-potatoes type guy who actually doesn't really like sauces of most kinds, you make sure that the ketchup bottle is full instead of sitting, nearly empty, in the refrigerator like some kind of cruel practical joke. Sorry, honey.

Chickpea & quinoa cakes with curry dipping sauce
{inspired by the pantry contents}
Makes 6 cakes

for the cakes:
1 19-oz can chickpeas, rinsed
1 cup cooked quinoa (leftovers are great here)
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1/4 cup chopped mushroom
1 egg
1/4 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs
1 Tbsp parmesan cheese
pinch of ground cumin
pinch of cayenne (optional)
salt & pepper
a few squeezes of lemon juice
olive oil

for the sauce:
1/2 cup plain greek-style yogurt
1/4 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp ground cumin
a few grinds of sea salt
a few squeezes of lemon juice

In a medium bowl, mash chickpeas almost completely. Stir in garlic, onions, mushroom, cumin, cayenne if using, salt & pepper to taste, and lemon juice. Crack egg into mixture, stir well and combine. Stir in crumbs, cheese and quinoa and combine well, then allow to sit for at least 5 minutes for binders to do their binding thing.

Heat as generous an amount of oil as you can allow yourself (think falafel) in a large skillet. Pat a handful of the chickpea mixture into a 1/3 inch flat patty and place in skillet. Fill skillet with patties and cook over medium-low heat, covered, for 7-8 minutes on each side. Patties are done when golden brown on each side.

While cakes cook, stir together all sauce ingredients. Serve cakes with sauce on the side or drizzled over the top, or between a hamburger bun garnished with your favorite toppings. I'd go for sprouts, cheese, and some red onion.

1 comment:

Ashley said...

i've glanced at this recipe about ten times, but finally read it... It looks really yummy! Perfect for left-over quinoa. Also, a good alternative to falafel

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