We asked three chefs to incorporate an ingredient from this month's "Food Lovers Guide: An Encyclopedia of Good Taste" into a delicious signature recipe. Here, Susan Feniger of STREET restaurant makes cooked quinoa (a supergrain!) into crunchy fritters.
2/3 cup white or black quinoa, rinsed and well drained (if necessary)
1 1/3 cups water
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup grated cotija or feta cheese
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 green onions, white and light green parts only, finely chopped
1/2 bunch Italian parsley, chopped
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup canola or grape seed oil, for frying
Avocado Tomatillo Dipping Sauce (see recipe below), for serving
Place a small, dry saucepan over high heat. Add quinoa and toast for about 5 minutes, shaking and stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Transfer to a large saucepan and add water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook, covered, until water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, combine cooked quinoa, flour, cheese, and salt. Add onions, parsley, egg, and yolk. Stir thoroughly with a spoon until the mixture has the consistency of soft dough.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Using two soup spoons, press batter into egg-shaped ovals and gently slide into the hot oil or use a small ice cream scoop. Fry until the bottoms are golden and brown, less than a minute. Turn and fry the second side until golden, less than a minute. Drain on paper towels and serve warm, topped with Avocado Tomatillo Dipping Sauce.
Avocado Tomatillo Dipping Sauce
1 pound tomatillos, husked, washed, and cut into quarters (about 8 to 10 tomatillos)
2 to 4 large jalapeno chiles, stemmed, seeded if desired, and roughly chopped
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
3 to 4 scallions, white and light green portions only, chopped
1 large bunch cilantro, chopped
2 teaspoons salt
2 medium avocados, halved, seeded, and peeled
Place the tomatillos, jalapenos, and orange juice in a blender. Puree just until chunky. Add remaining ingredients and puree about 2 minutes more, or until smooth.
Copyright © 2012, Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, www.bordergrill.com.