#52NewFoods: Quinoa

Last week Les Petits Chefs worked with quinoa as their #52NewFoods ingredient.  Only a handful of them told me they had eaten it before although many of them knew it as a “salad ingredient”.  The recipe we were using from the 52 New Foods Challenge book was a simple patty – made up of quinoa, breadcrumbs, eggs, Parmesan cheese, apple and onions and I partly chose to make this recipe because I saw lots of jobs to keep little hands busy through our hour-long session…

Grating cheese…

Kids grating parmesan on eatlivetravelwrite.comDicing onions…. (they’re getting really good at this!)

Kids dicing onion on eatlivetravelwrite.comChopping apples really finely…

Kids chopping apples on eatlivetravelwrite.comMeasuring breadcrumbs…

Measuring breadcrumbs on eatlivetravelwrite.comCracking eggs…

Kids cracking eggs on eatlivetravelwrite.comAnd finally – mixing all those ingredients with quinoa…

Kids mixing quinoa cakes on eatlivetravelwrite.com Kids making quinoa cakes on eatlivetravelwrite.comYup – it was so much fun!

(and before you wonder at the sticky state of the boys’ fingers – that’s totally my fault – you are supposed to rub your fingers with olive oil before you start forming the patties but in the chaos – yes, I’m nothing if not honest, this session was messy and chaotic, in an organised sort of fashion – I just forgot)

Kids making Jennifer Typer Lee's quinoa cakes on eatlivetravelwrite.comThe boys did an excellent job of making “quinoa sliders” as they started to call them.

Kids making quinoa cakes from the 52 New Foods Challenge on eatlivetravelwrite.comWe found the plain quinoa much easier to work with as opposed to the tri-colour one. I had cooked the tri-colour one the night before and the plain quinoa just before the session so that might have had something to do with it. The plain quinoa was definitely much more “sticky”. But the boys persevered and made about 5 of these little patties each.

Kids making quinoa cakes for the 52 New Foods Challenge on eatlivetravelwrite.com Quinoa cakes ready to cook on eatlivetravelwrite.comMore than one boys told me these looked like fish cakes, which they totally do. Then we got to fry them up. Always fun when we fry in the lab – and we all go home smelling like a chip shop 😉

Kids cooking quinoa cakes from the 52 New Foods Challenge on eatlivetravelwrite.comThe boys, Miss Carter and I worked hard to make sure not too many of these fell apart!

Quinoa cakes frying in pan on eatlivetravelwrite.comAnd ended up doing a pretty good job!

Jennifer Tyler Lee, author of The 52 New Foods Challenge, told me a trick to help these stick together when they are cooking – “put the cakes in the freezer for a few minutes before sautéeing and they’ll hold their shape better.”

Quinoa cakes from The 52 New Foods Challenge on eatlivetravelwrite.comResult? I managed to snag a few of these which I saved for my lunch the following day. They are REALLY good and they boys seemed to like them as well. Of course, as one told me, “they would be better with bacon” (what wouldn’t?!) but I love what a blank slate these are – open to so many possibilities for add-ins and flavours.

Get the recipe for Quinoa Crumble Cakes in The 52 New Foods Challenge cookbook here.

Want to see 52 New Foods in action? Check out the 52 New Foods Junior Chef Classes at your local Williams Sonoma (call your local store for details!)


52 New Foods on eatlivetravelwrite.com

Buy The 52 New Foods Challenge at your local Williams Sonoma store or on Amazon or Amazon Canada. Or for free worldwide shipping, buy from The Book Depository. What new food will YOU try this week?


Please note: The product links from Amazon, Amazon.ca and The Book Depository are affiliate links meaning if you click over and purchase something, I will receive a very small percentage of the purchase price which goes towards maintaining eat. live. travel. write. Thank you in advance!



Disclosure: I received a copy of the 52 New Foods Challenge cookbook for the purposes of taking part in the #52NewFoods Challenge through Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Ambassador Community. I was asked to create one original recipe for the challenge. I did not receive any further compensation for writing this post nor any other promotion of the book I might be involved with.


8 thoughts on “#52NewFoods: Quinoa”

  1. Sigh. Mr. Neil di NOT get a sample. This new term is approaching #fodformrneilfail. 😉

    Like the tip about freezing before frying- I would not have thought of that.

    Clearly no wine pairing here….though I’m thinking a nice Vouvray would do the trick.

  2. We LOVED these Quinoa Cakes for dinner. The boys loved to form the cakes and smell the delicious scent as they cooked and loved them even more as the devoured them.

    Lucky boys to explore such yummy foods like quinoa and feel so creative in the kitchen and dining room.


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