Today I feel like sharing a favorite appetizer of mine, Cauliflower/Quinoa Cakes with Chimichurri. I have served them at causal gatherings and formal dinner parties alike as an hors d'euvre. There is going to be a lot of entertaining in the near future with so many holidays coming up and this recipe is definitely a crowd pleaser. Quinoa happens to be one of the oldest grains on the planet and one that is so high in protein (1/2 cup of quinoa 13.10 grams of protein). Serve these bite size patties with a spicy Chimichurri Sauce for dipping. It's perfect for Vegetarians and people who observe Kosher laws. It's a healthy alternative and the perfect nosh. Serve these tasty morsels warm.
CAULIFLOWER/QUINOA CAKES WITH CHIMICHURRI SAUCE Yield: 16 medium cakes 2/3 cup Quinoa 2 cups chopped Cauliflower Florets, chopped small 1/4 medium sweet Onion, roughly chopped 2 large cloves Garlic, minced 4 oz. Goat or Feta Cheese Crumbles 1 handful fresh Parsley & Dill mixed 2 large Eggs Zest of one Lemon 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda Salt and Pepper to taste
1) Cook the Quinoa according to package instructions. Place in a bowl and cool. Set aside. 2) Place Cauliflower, Onions and Garlic in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles rice. Add the Cheese and Herbs and pulse a few more times. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of Quinoa and add the Eggs, Lemon Juice and Zest, Baking Soda and salt and pepper. Mix well. 3) Scoop out 1/4 cup of the mixture (or smaller according to how small you want to serve them) and form a ball. Arrange on a baking dish either sprayed with Olive Oil Spray or with parchment paper so they don't stick. Flatten them slightly to form a patty shape. 4) Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden and firm. Dip into the Chimichurri Sauce (follows).
CHIMICHURRI SAUCE Place 1/2 cup chopped Italian Parsley, 1/2 cup chopped Cilantro or Mint, 1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1/3 cup fresh Lemon Juice, 4 cloves minced Garlic, 1 teaspoon finely chopped Jalapeno or crushed Red Pepper (optional) and salt and pepper to taste into a blender. Blend until the mixture is smooth and well combined.