Spinach & Mushroom Quinoa Fritters With Garlic Aioli

I find myself moving towards a plant based diet, and although I will never become vegan as I could not give up eggs and some dairy, I think at this point in my life reducing the animal protein in my life just feels right. In my search for eating a healthy primarily plant based diet I realize that I will have to ensure I get enough protein. It is actually much easier than one might think to eat a protein rich plant based diet as there are many healthy ingredients, such as the super food quinoa that makes that very possible.

Quinoa has been cultivated for thousands of years and although it is often categorized as a grain, it is actually the small seed of a plant in the same family as beets and spinach. The seed is disc shaped with a band around it that becomes obvious once it has been cooked. It is a fast cooking grain and can be ready in about 15 minutes. Unlike most grains, quinoa is considered a complete protein containing all the necessary amino acids. It is also a great source of fiber, and a decent source of iron, magnesium, calcium, vitamin A and vitamin E.

These quinoa fritters are an easy lunch option that I have begun to enjoy making using leftover vegetables. You can use just about any vegetables you like, but after hosting a pizza night recently I had a bowl each of leftover spinach and mushrooms that I needed to use up. I simply match whatever vegetables I have leftover to equal parts cooked quinoa and mix them together For every 2 cups of mixture I add 1 egg and 2 tablespoons of whole grain flour. Of course you can use whatever seasonings or fresh herbs you prefer to flavor these fritters. I have found that it is best to chop whatever vegetables you are using fairly small. I serve these fritters with a fresh tomato salsa, a dollop of Greek Yogurt, or as I did here some garlic and lemon aioli. I even like these fritters cold from the refrigerator with a squeeze of lemon. I use a non-stick skillet to cook these fritters so very little oil is needed.

Why Healthy

  • Quinoa (aka Super Seed) is a gluten free seed that provides a complete protein as well as iron, phosphorous, magnesium, calcium, vitamin E, and folic acid.
  • Spinach can claim a special place among vegetables in terms of its phytonutrient content. Most of the flavonoid and carotenoid nutrients found in spinach that provide anti-inflammatory benefits provide antioxidant benefits as well.
  • Spinach is also an excellent source of other antioxidant nutrients including vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, and manganese, as well as a very good source of the antioxidant zinc and a good source of the antioxidant selenium.

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Spinach & Mushroom Quinoa Fritters With Garlic Aioli

Yield: Makes 6

Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook Time: 15 mins

Ingredients:

1 Cup Cooked Quinoa
1/2 Cup Finely Diced Sautéed Mushrooms
1/2 Cup Chopped Sautéed Spinach
1 Large Egg
2 Tablespoons Whole Grain Flour (I Used Farro)
Salt & Pepper To Taste
2 Tablespoons Finely Chopped Fresh Basil
Olive Oil or Coconut Oil For Frying
Light Aioli Sauce:
1/2 Cup Olive Oil Mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
1 Garlic Clove Finely Minced
1 Tablespoon Chopped Fresh Chives

Directions:

In a bowl, mix together the fritter ingredients and let sit 10 minutes.
In a small bowl, blend together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, and garlic with a hand blender until smooth, adding a teaspoon of water if needed.
Season the aioli with salt and pepper, and stir in the chives and refrigerate until needed.
Heat a tablespoon or two of the oil in a heavy skillet until hot.
Take a 1/3 cup measure and scoop out the fritter mixture.
Place the mixture into the skillet and flatten with a spatula.
Add another two or three fritters to the pan and cook over medium heat until the bottom is golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Carefully turn the fritters and cook the other side in the same fashion.
Continue to use up the rest of the fritter mixture.
Serve the fritters warm alongside your sauce of choice.

 

2 Responses to “Baked Stuffed Shells”

  1. Meredith — August 22, 2012 @ 3:20 am

    This looks amazing, can you please tell me if it is suitable to freeze? If so, would you cook it first then freeze? Many thanks.

    [Reply]

    recipe Reply:

    Meredith, yes it should freeze fine. I would freeze it before baking.

    [Reply]

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