Round quinoa cakes, mixed with cheese and onion, and then topped with diced tomatoes and a delightful Balsamic Ricotta sauce.
Another dish I made during December, in an effort to balance out all the holiday feasting, were these quinoa cakes. Packed with flavor from the cheese and onions, Ben and I loved these and made them again for his parents' Christmas visit. The red onions are an important ingredient for the flavor. I know this because I left them out the second time when my red onion mysteriously rolled into the trunk of my car and made me think the grocery store cashier left them out of my bags. Replacing with yellow onion did not suffice.
Another tip when making these. If you make the quinoa in advance, or in other words, use already cooked quinoa that was stored in your fridge, then warm it up before mixing in the rest of the ingredients. The warm quinoa helps the other ingredients melt into each other, assisting in keeping the patties from crumbling when cooking.
Judah was also a fan. What a great way to get your kids to eat healthy, too!
What are some of your favorite healthier meals that are also packed with flavor?
Caprese Quinoa Patties with Balsamic Ricotta Sauce
For the patties:
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- 1/2 red onion , finely diced
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup Ricotta (low-fat is fine)
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 ounces crumbled Feta cheese
- 3 large eggs , lightly beaten
- 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil , for frying
For the sauce and toppings:
- 1/2 cup Ricotta (low-fat is fine)
- 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 plum tomatoes , seeded and diced
- In a medium sauce pan, bring 2 cups of water to a rapid boil. Add the quinoa and stir. Cover then reduce heat to low and let cook for 15 minutes (do not remove the cover during this time). After 15 minutes, remove from the heat and take off the cover. Let stand for 2 minutes, then fluff with fork. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- Add the onion, salt, pepper and bread crumbs to the mixing bowl and stir to combine with the cooked quinoa. Stir in the 1/4 cup Ricotta, 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar and Feta cheese, then mix in the lightly beaten eggs. Using your hands, shape into 8 to 12 patties (depending how large you make them).
- Heat 1 Tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet. Cook 4-5 patties at a time for 5 to 7 minutes on each side, until browned and cook through. Remove and transfer to a paper towel lined plate, then cook remaining patties.
- To make the sauce, combine the 1/2 cup Ricotta with the 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar until smooth. Serve the cooked patties individually topped with the diced tomatoes and drizzled with the Balsamic Ricotta sauce.
- Recipe Source: Prevention RD's Everyday Healthy Cooking