Carrot and Quinoa Fritters

I have a lot of quinoa in my pantry, and last year you saw me make quite a bit with it, including salads and burgers. But instead of relying on some of my old favorites, I wanted to try something different to kick off 2011. I had a recipe from Susan Feniger for quinoa fritters, which are similar to latkes, just without potato. I really liked the sound of them, but wanted to add a few more nutrients to the bowl. Or, I wanted to clean out my fridge and finally find a use for all the carrots I'd been saving up. Either way, I served the fritters topped with an herbed yogurt sauce, and the result was a crispy, tasty, filling meal. I love when kitchen experiments turn out well.


Makes 18-20

2/3 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 1/3 cup water
1 cup grated carrots
4 scallions, finely chopped
1/2 bunch Italian parsley leaves, chopped
1 egg
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil
Herbed yogurt sauce (recipe follows)

Place the quinoa in a small, dry saucepan over medium heat. Toast, shaking and stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the water. Bring to a boil; reduce to simmer and cook, partially covered, until the water is absorbed, about 12 minutes. Set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the quinoa, carrots, scallions, parsley, egg, salt and pepper. Stir until well combined.

Heat two rounds of vegetable oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Press a heaping tablespoon of batter into the oil, gently pressing down to flatten them slightly. Fry until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes. Turn and fry the second side until golden, about 1 to 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve with herbed yogurt sauce.

For the yogurt sauce, combine 1 cup Greek yogurt with a good amount of fresh herbs, like parsley, chives, and basil. Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice and stir to combine.