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These little Quinoa & Courgette Herb Cakes are free of gluten and dairy if you’re sensitive to either. The quinoa gives them a firm, nutty texture, which is delicious with the fresh herbs and courgette/zucchini. Dipped in a little garlic mayonnaise, chilli jam or tomato chutney, they’re wonderful!

 

Serves 4

Ingredients 

140g/5oz/1 cup quinoa

300g/101⁄2oz courgette/zucchini, grated

3 spring onions/scallions, sliced

1 garlic clove, crushed

handful of mint leaves, shredded

handful of parsley leaves, chopped

10 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped

juice of 1⁄2 lemon

55g/2oz/1⁄2 cup cornflour/cornstarch

1 egg

rapeseed/canola oil, for frying

sea salt and freshly ground

black pepper

garlic mayonnaise, chilli jam or tomato chutney, to serve

green salad, to serve

 

Method

Tip the quinoa into a small saucepan and cover with 300ml/101⁄2fl oz/11⁄4 cups of cold water. Bring to the boil, cover with a lid and cook for about 5 minutes until all the water has been absorbed and the quinoa is cooked. Turn out into a bowl and leave to one side to cool.

Meanwhile, place the grated courgette/zucchini in the bowl of a food processor with the spring onions/scallions, garlic, mint, parsley, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon juice and cornflour/cornstarch. Crack the egg straight into the mixture, add the quinoa, and season with salt and pepper. Blend for about 30 seconds to mix the ingredients thoroughly and to form a thick paste. Tip the mixture out into a bowl and taste to check the seasoning.

Heat about 5mm/1⁄4in rapeseed/canola oil in a large frying pan until the oil is hot enough to sizzle loudly when you drop in a tiny bit of the courgette/ zucchini mixture.

Drop a heaped tablespoon of the mixture into the hot oil, flattening slightly with the back of the spoon to form round patties. Repeat until you have 3–4 cakes in the pan at the same time, or as many as your pan will fit comfortably, with room to turn.

After 3–4 minutes the underside of the cakes should be nicely golden and holding their shape. Gently flip them over and cook until the second side is golden. Lift the cakes out of the oil onto some paper towels and keep warm. Repeat until all of the mixture has been used; you should end up with 12–14 cakes. Serve the cakes warm with green salad and your choice of dip.

 

NOTE: To make a very quick garlic mayonnaise or aioli, add

2 crushed garlic cloves to 4 tbsp good-quality mayonnaise along with a squeeze of lemon juice. Season with freshly ground black pepper and, if needed, a little sea salt.

Recipe taken from Healthy Speedy Suppers, written by Katriona Macgregor

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