Cooking is wonderful metaphor for life, don’t you think? It requires an open mind, patience, flexibility, resourcefulness and a nice sense of humor. Most of the best home cooks I know understand this, so I try to have the same attitude with every dish I make. Take this one, for example. My intent was to make savory falafel pancakes. That didn’t quite work. I had to change gears a bit when I ran into a bit of a dilemma—I cooked my chickpeas way too long (I was multi-tasking and forgot about them, eeks!) and the result was not too pretty. Before I could pulse them in the processor I had a pot of mush that was much too soft for the falafel pancakes I had in mind.
I thought of making soup, adding the chickpea mash/purée into it for added creaminess. While I kept that in mind as an option I remembered the leftover quinoa I had on hand in the refrigerator. The quinoa was just what I needed to give more structure to form the mash into little patties. So on I went, seasoning my chickpeas with onions, garlic, tahini, with warm and cozy flavors of cumin, coriander, turmeric and a hint of cardamom. Quinoa worked beautifully to bring structure. To lighten things up, instead of frying them, I baked them.
As you can see from the photos, these patties can be eaten a variety of ways—served in a wrap of collard greens or a pita bread; and/or on a bed of or topped with wilted greens. I served them with a lemony tahini sauce and a slightly sweet and sour cranberry chutney. Together the combination of flavors worked so well and the dish turned out much better than what I originally had in mind.
Reminder: PWC’s 2nd Healthy Lifestyle Challenge Starting soon. Stay tuned!
Chickpea-Quinoa Patties with Cranberry Ginger Chutney
Makes about 12-16 patties
2 cups cooked garbanzo beans (see note)
1/2 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1-2 tablespoons tahini paste
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon turmeric, ground
1/2 teaspoon, or more, salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8-1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 cups cooked quinoa
3-4 tablespoons sesame seeds, optional
greens (baby spinach, arugula or baby kale), to serve
pita bread, optional
collard greens, deveined, optional
lemon zest, for garnish, optional
lemon wedges, to serve, optional
You may want to double or even triple the recipe
3 tablespoons tahini paste
2 tablespoons lemon juice, fresh
2-3 tablespoons, or more, water
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 teaspoon salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
Cranberry Ginger Chutney
8 ounces cranberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 asian pear (or Granny Smith apple), diced
1/2 cup cane sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons ginger, peeled and grated
Make the chutney. In a small sauce pan, combine all ingredients and allow to simmer until it reduces and consistency is relatively thick, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Preheat oven to 425 Fahrenheit.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly brush with olive oil.
In a food processor, combine chickpeas, onion, garlic and tahini and pulse a few times. The mixture should be a bit thick and chunky, not creamy. Transfer chickpeas to a bowl and add remaining ingredients (spices and herbs). Add cooked quinoa and combine. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Form chickpea and quinoa mixture into small patties, about 1 1/2 inches wide. Press (or sprinkle) one side of each patty with sesame seeds. Bake until golden, about 5-7 minutes each side.
While the patties are baking, make the lemon-tahini sauce. Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl, adding more water or lemon juice if it seems too thick. Taste, adjust seasoning.
In a saucepan heat a teaspoon or so of olive oil, add greens and a pinch of salt. Sauté until slightly wilted, only about 1-2 minutes.
Serve patties in a pita, collard green wrap, and wilted greens with lemon-tahini sauce. Top with chutney. Sprinkle with lemon zest and serve.
Note: I prefer to use dry garbanzo beans, soaking them overnight and then cooking them. See my post on making hummus to see how to cook dry garbanzo beans. However, if you’re in a pinch for time, canned beans would also work.