So yes, dear readers, that's usually how things go down in my kitchen. The night of these quinoa cakes was no different. This recipe was heavily inspired by Joy the Baker's lemon olive parsley quinoa cakes, except: I used basil instead of parsley, omitted the olives altogether, used a mixture of yellow onion and spring onion, and doubled the salt. Also, these quinoa cakes need some dipping sauce action. I made one out of yogurt, lemon juice, and a little basil pesto.
These quinoa cakes were light, flavorful, and incredibly easy. Give them a try, whether the instructions come from me, Joy, or Heidi, and you will not regret it.
Springtime Lemon Basil Quinoa Cakes with Basil Lemon Yogurt Sauce
adapted from Joy the Baker adapted from Heidi Swanson
3 cups cooked quinoa
1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 bunch spring onions, sliced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper or crushed red pepper flakes
4 large eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon water (optional)
olive oil for
1 cup yogurt (I prefer a Greek-style or strained yogurt, for thickness)
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon basil pesto
For the quinoa cakes, mix all ingredients except the eggs, water, and olive oil together in a large mixing bowl. When the mixture is well incorporated, add in the beaten eggs. If the mixture doesn't feel wet enough, go ahead and add the water. Coat your cast-iron pan or frying pan of choice with olive oil and cook these bad boys for about 5 minutes per side. You want to cook these on heat that is high enough for them to brown nicely but low enough so the inside actually cooks. Put the quinoa cakes onto a paper towel-lined plate for drainage.
Mix the yogurt, lemon juice, and basil pesto. Season as desired.
Serve the quinoa cakes with the yogurt sauce.