Quinoa, zucchini and black eyed pea cakes with Romesco sauce
1 medium zucchini - a slim one with not so many seeds
1 14 oz can black eyed peas (this one had salt)
1 teaspoon roasted cumin powdered
1/3 cup finely crumbled feta cheese
1/3 cup onion, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped jalapeño (more or less depending on your tolerance for spice)
1 small clove of garlic, peeled, and coarsely chopped
Canola oil for pan frying
- Wash the quinoa in a sieve to remove the bitter coating. In a 1 quart saucepan, add the quinoa with 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt and 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer and cover and cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the quinoa cool.
- Grate the zucchini and set aside.
- Add the chopped onion, jalapeno and garlic to the food processor and give it a quick buzz to break up the aromatics into small pieces. Now add the drained black eyed peas and pulse till it is a paste and incorporated with the aromatics. Remove to a large mixing bowl.
- Add the grated zucchini, cooled quinoa, cumin powder and crumbled feta and mix by hand. Taste the mixture to check for seasonings and adjust according to your taste.
- Form into little cakes 3/4th inch thick and 2 inches round and lay them out on a sheet tray to be refrigerated for an hour before frying. This step helps to firm up the cakes, so they don't crumble while frying. Cover the tray with cling wrap before putting in the refrigerator.
- When you are ready to fry, heat a non-stick griddle over medium high heat and add a thin layer of canola oil just enough to glaze the griddle. Gently lay the cakes in a single layer and cook without flipping for 3 minutes without flipping them over medium heat. Check if the bottom is brown and flip them to brown the other side. Cook for another 3 minutes on the second. Remove when the cakes are golden brown on both sides.
- Serve with Romesco sauce. (Recipe below).
Romesco sauce (my version)
1 large roasted red pepper, skin and seeds removed
1 small clove of garlic
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Put all the ingredients in the food processor except for the olive oil. Blend to a coarse mixture. Now slowly add the olive oil through the tube and continue to pulse to emulsify the sauce. Taste for seasoning.