I was in the mood for Mexican food today and wanted to do something with my leftovers. Nothing ever goes to waste in my kitchen. I even freeze the trimmings of the vegetables and herbs to use them later in a homemade vegetarian broth. I keep a large Ziploc bag in the freezer and toss the trimmings in it until I have enough to make a broth and let me tell you nothing beats a homemade broth. The cauliflower core is from the soup I made earlier. The herb stems, in this case cilantro, add tons of flavor to the broth.
What I had to work with was cooked quinoa, millet and black beans, perfect for veggie patties. I added all my ingredients to the bowl and mixed them together. The mixture didn’t hold together. If this happens to you, don’t panic. There is a fix for every disaster in the kitchen, well almost every disaster.
I could have added flour to remedy the situation, but I wanted to keep the patties gluten free. The oven was already preheated, so I had to move on to plan B. I quickly peeled and diced two potatoes and microwaved them for 5 minutes. I also added a tablespoon of water for the potatoes not to dry out. I then smashed the potatoes and added them to the mixture.
I have had veggie burgers fall apart on me while cooking in the oven. Instead of tossing them in the garbage, I transferred them to a bowl to cool first. I then added either chickpea or all-purpose flour and reshaped them. This trick always worked like a charm and helped the patties hold their shape. Another trick to use when the patties are too soft, is not to flip them over and letting them cool completely before moving them.
Adding the potatoes helped my mixture somewhat, but it still felt a little wet. I ended up adding two tablespoons of potato starch and bingo the problem was solved. The first time I heard about potato starch, was over 15 years ago on Jacques Pépin‘s cooking show. I remember checking few stores before I was able to find it. Nowadays, you can find it in every supermarket. Potato starch is made from whole russet potatoes that are peeled, dehydrated and made into ground. They are great for thickening soups and sauces without adding any gluten.
My patties were perfectly shaped and ready to go in the oven. I was even able to flip them over after 20 minutes without them falling apart on me. They turned out delicious with a crunchy and meaty texture and enough heat from the spices. I consider this a successful day in the kitchen. I got to use my leftovers and I have something tasty to eat for few days yay!
Mexican Quinoa Patties
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 40 min
Ready in: 55 min
Yields: 8 patties
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 cup cooked millet
1 cup cooked black beans
2 medium potatoes cooked and smashed
2 large organic free-range eggs
1 cup fresh cilantro chopped
1 tablespoon Mexican oregano
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground chipotle chili pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoon potato starch
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Mix all the ingredients together.
- Coat a non-stick oven pan with extra virgin olive oil. Form the mixture into patties and place in the pan.
- Bake in a preheated 350 degrees oven for 40 minutes. Half way through cooking, gently flip them over.
- Serve with your favorite salsa or a side of salad.