Chia, Quinoa, Kale Fritterson Lemony Spinach
My CSA had just arrived from Something Good Organics and I decided to challenge myself to use as many ingredients as possible in something a little out of my comfort zone. I had a batch of quinoa in the fridge and wanted to incorporate it into something that wasn't a typical "bowl" dish. I'd seen people make fritters but most, if not all, had egg in them. So here I've easily plantified a typically not vegan dish!
As a bonus...Maybe my kid is growing out of that "I hate salad" stage but even I was surprised when she snarfed this whole bowl down in seconds flat. She said, "this spinach is so good". Music to a mama's ears. Even the husband said, "I feel like I'm eating in a field, everything tastes so fresh and flavorful". Score!!!!
Ideally, you've taken note of my food prep post and already have some quinoa in the fridge just waiting for a great recipe but if not, you'll want to cook some quinoa first.
1/2 cup Quinoa (dry) or 1 cup cooked
2 tbsp Chia Seeds
1 cup Water (plus 6 tablespoons)
2 cups Kale Leaves (chopped)
1 tbsp Coconut Oil (divided)
1/2 Sweet Onion (diced)
3 Garlic Cloves (minced)
Sea Salt & Black Pepper (to taste)
1/3 cup Oats
1/3 cup Almond Flour/Meal
1 Avocado (peeled and sliced)
1 Lemon (juiced, divided)
4 handfuls Spinach
Cook quinoa by placing 1/2 cup of quinoa and 1 cup of water in a saucepan (or make more to have on hand). Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil for about 2 minutes. Cover and turn off the heat. Let stand for about 15 minutes. Check to see all water has evaporated and fluff with a fork.
Soak 2 tbsp of chia seeds in a bowl/cup with 6 tbsp of water for approx 10 minutes.
In a frying pan, heat half the coconut oil (optional) over medium heat (or just in some water). Saute onion until mostly translucent (about 3-5 minutes). Then add kale and until it's mostly wilted (1 - 2 minutes). Remove from heat.
In a large mixing bowl combine the chia seed mixture, quinoa, kale/onion mixture, garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir well. Let cool for 10-15 minutes then add in the oats and almond flour/meal. Mix well.
With clean hands, form even patties with the mixture and place on a piece of waxed paper. If they're falling apart, pack them tighter. Create a ball and flatten once on the wax paper.
In a large skillet, heat remaining coconut oil over medium heat. Use a spatula and fork to carefully transfer the fritters from the wax paper to the frying pan. Cook the fritters for 5-6 minutes per side or until the main surface is turning a lovely cripsy brown.
Make a little avocado mash to accompany the fritters. In a bowl mash avocado with a fork. Add the lemon juice and whip with a fork until a creamy consistency forms. Season with a pinch of sea salt, pepper, or fresh herbs if desired.
Serve the fritters as is or on a bed of spinach lightly tossed with a hearty squeeze of lemon juice and a dollop the avocado mash on the side.
Got a picky kid?
Let them dip these into ketchup! I'd rather my kid have a bit of ketchup than not have kale and quinoa!
Increase Kitchen Confidence....
Try adding some fresh herbs or spices to the avocado mash. I used fresh parsley and some chili flakes and it was incredible. Play around with flavors that appeal to you!
The fresh Zhoug Sauce from Trader Joe's is also a lovely accompaniment to this dish.