Thursday, January 19, 2012

Quinoa Cakes with Poached Eggs

Ummm, what?!  I know what you are thinking.  I really don't have anything to say for myself.  I don't consider myself a gourmet.  And when I first saw this recipe on Annie's blog, I just skimmed it over and didn't give it a second thought.  When in the world would I ever make that?  I was there long enough to see her rave reviews but that's about it.  And I didn't know if I believed her.  

I've mentioned that we are trying to make better eating choices.  I have also mentioned that I am trying to cook a few meatless meals a week.  I have heard a million times how healthy quinoa is for you.  Not that this was my first quinoa experience.  I have tried making it before back in our GF/CF days.  Once.  And then I decided I didn't really like it.  Anyway, I keep hearing how good it is for you, I am seeing increasingly more recipes for it and it was bugging me that it wasn't good when I made it.  I picked up a bag of it at Target the other day on a whim and then last night, I heard a tip that I thought might change my mind about this weird food.  I guess you are supposed to rinse it before you cook it because it has a bitter coating.  Hmmm, I don't know that I did that last time.  (Who knows, it was like 2 years ago)

Put all of that together with me not knowing what I was going to make for dinner and looking through the fridge for inspiration.  I had a headache so I wasn't looking for anything extensive.  I feel like we have been eating a lot of soup and I was kind of over it for a minute.  And then I remembered this crazy quinoa and poached egg business.  My kids like eggs so I thought I'd give it a try.  I was skeptical until I started cooking the quinoa cakes and sampled one of the crispy pieces that flaked off.  Then, I got excited.  Maybe I could actually cook this South American grain!  I quite liked it.  The kid ate their eggs and enough of the cake to make me feel good about feeding them something good.  You could probably also make this gluten free if you substituted the bread crumbs for some GF oats (ran through the blender).  I would, for sure, make this again, and that is a big surprise since I started out being such a skeptic!  I am proud of myself for trying something new.  Which is one of my New Year's Resolutions.  More about that later though....

Quinoa Cakes with Poached Eggs
Slightly adapted from: Super Natural Every Day: Well-loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen
2 cups cooked quinoa (about 1 cup raw, cooked) and cooled to room temperature
2 large eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup chives
2 T red onion
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup whole grain bread crumbs
2 cloves garlic
1-2 T olive oil
shredded Parmesan or shaved Parmesan for serving
6 eggs for poaching

(I wasn't sure how to rinse it, I thought these little buggers would go through my smallest stainer, so I put them on a paper towel and tried rinsing that way.  It was semi-successful.  Does anyone have a good tip for rinsing this stuff?)

Mix quinoa, 2 eggs beaten, salt, chives, red onion, 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, and garlic together in a bowl.  
Turn about 3 quarts of water on high heat and add 2 tsp vinegar.  Heat skillet over med-high heat and add 1-2 T olive oil until it starts to smoke, meanwhile form quinoa mixture into 6 patties (about 3-4 inches in diameter).  Once oil is hot, cook cakes on each side about 4 minutes, until golden brown.  
Once water starts to barely simmer, turn heat off.  Place eggs one at a time into a small bowl, with bowl almost at the surface of the water, carefully slide each egg in.  The more you disturb the water when dropping them in, the more they will come apart.  Repeat with all the eggs and let sit for about 5 minutes or until it's done to your liking.  
(It looks kind of creepy.  Like ghosts in the water or something, don't you think? I hope I don't have nightmares.)
Remove eggs from water and drain on a plate lined with a paper towels.  To assemble, place quinoa cake on the plate, then shaved or shredded Parmesan cheese and cover with poached egg and salt and pepper.  

Enjoy! :)

If you feel like you need more of a poached egg tutorial click HERE.  I did mine a bit differently but I am sure this method would work and it has more in depth instructions and photos.  If you are completely put off by the idea of a poached egg, you could always just cook them over-easy or over-med (whatever you like) in a skillet with non-stick spray.  I usually get the pan hot, add the spray then the egg, and a couple tablespoons of water and cover with the lid.  The steam cooks the top of the egg so you don't have to flip it.

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P.S. Get ready for another giveaway coming soon. :)


  1. I would love to know an easy way to rinse quinoa too! this sounds good, i'll have to try it!

  2. have you ever tried vinegar in the water for poached eggs? i tried it a few times, but eh? it's aight. I'll have to try you method of turning off the heat and see how they do. I do love poached eggs :)
    And... i have a bag of quinoa that I''m still trying to get the nerve up to try... so we'll see :)

    ps. yay for the new years resolutions!

    1. Let me know if you try it and what you think. I did put a couple tsp of vinegar in the water but I don't know if that's the "right" way to do it.

  3. I think these look delicious. So do you put the bowl into the water with the egg in it? I think this sounds too difficult for my level. Sheesh.

    I haven't had my computer for a few days and I am loving all of these new recipes. Those cupcakes! Seriously? Holy Canoli, they look perfect.

    Did you have nightmares over your ghostly eggs? haha

    1. No, you don't put the bowl in the water, just try to get it as close to the water so the egg slides in instead of dropping it it. It's really not that bad, I think it's just a little intimidating the first time and then you wonder why it was a big deal! I know you could do it! Don't those eggs look spooky!

  4. I feel like this recipe is just for me, and that you thought of me making a gluten free meal. I love you your awesome!!! This looks delish.

  5. Made this the other night and we ALL loved it. I really liked having the quinoa in a patty form, because half of it usually ends up on the floor when my kids eat it. Same thing with cous-cous. It made plenty for a family of five with a couple left over for my lunch the next day. Yumm!


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