Thursday, January 27, 2011

I Made Black-eyed Pea and Quinoa Croquettes!

Quinoa is my favorite grain because it has tons of fiber and it is a complete protein. My friend at the Natural Gourmet School told me that essentially all quinoa is organic, because it is only produced in certain regions of Bolivia and Peru, and farmers monitor each other to guarantee their organic certification. (As in, if one farmer decides to use pesticides, then it would mess it up for everyone, so no one wants to be caught with pesticides. Thus, organic!) The following recipe comes from Vegan with a Vengeance (p. 88-89).
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked black-eyed peas, drained, or 1 (15-0z) can, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa, at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme, crumbled
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil, crumbled
  • 1 tsp paprika
Preheat the oven to 350F.
In a mixing bowl mash the black-eyed peas with a potato masher and then your hands. Add the olive oil and soy sauce and stir. Add the quinoa and spices and combine the mixture with your hands. You should be able to mold them into balls that readily stick together.
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs (I didn't have any, so I toasted some sourdough slices till crispy and food processed them into crumbs)
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • A few dashes of fresh black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (I used a squirt of bottled lemon juice)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
In a small bowl mix together all the ingredients for the breading. Spray a baking pan with a little oil. Form the croquettes into walnut-sized balls. Gently roll the balls between your palms three or four times, then flatten out the ends so that the croquettes resemble marshmallows. Coat each ball with the bread crumbs and place on the prepared baking sheet. When all the croquettes have been formed, spray lightly with oil. Bake for 40 minutes, turning once after 20 minutes.

The author serves these croquettes with cooked quinoa and mushroom sauce. I didn't have time to make the mushroom sauce, so I just used ketchup and mustard. Also, these croquettes are so protein-packed because of power combo of black-eyed peas and quinoa that I didn't need any additional quinoa on the side. Lastly, after twenty minutes of baking, when you flip over the croquettes, it seems like they are overly crumbling. Wrong! After baking for a total of 40 minutes, the croquettes hold together very nicely.

EDIT: I tried this with kidney beans (food processed the first step instead of mashing). Doesn't work as well...

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