Quinoa Bites

I found this recipe on Pinterest.

If you’re not familiar with Pinterest, it is pretty much the brainchild of Satan.  It’s a place where people (mostly women with too much time on their hands) go to “pin” things that they find on the internet.  These things can be arranged into “boards” according to the individual’s needs, and people (eherm… Me…) can lose hours – HOURS, I tell you! – surfing the site (and if you’re not careful, you’ll leave a session with Pinterest feeling like you’re completely inadequate).

There are a lot of really great things on Pinterest, but you’ve GOT to be choosy because there’s also a LOT of crap.  The problem is that it ALL looks gorgeous, so weeding out the winners from the clunkers is often a matter of actually trying it yourself.

I found a winner.

The original recipe is here.  I’m rendering it here as I will modify it next time.

Start with a cup of quinoa and cook that in whatever way you do.  If you don’t know how to cook quinoa, the process is sort of a mix between rice and couscous; take an amount of quinoa and double that amount for the liquid – I often use chicken broth, but any liquid works just fine (including milk!) – and bring it to a boil.  Simmer for about 10 minutes, then fluff the stuff with a fork.  My favorite cooking process is in the rice cooker – dump everything in, push the button, and you’re in business.

While the quinoa is cooking, combine about a cup of grated parmesan, 3 eggs, 3 tablespoons of flour, a cup of shredded carrots, a good handful of chopped green onion, and as much minced garlic as suits your taste.  I’m going to include a dash of garlic salt and perhaps some mushrooms and chopped yellow onion the next time I put these together; I found them to be a tiny bit bland.

Mix everything together (I didn’t bother to cool the quinoa first – it went from rice cooker to mixing bowl with little ill effect) and spoon the mixture into muffin cups – oh; and unless you’re using silicone muffin tins (which I would HIGHLY recommend), make sure you oil them well or you’ll never get the bites out.  Next time I make these, I’m going to sprinkle some cheese in the cups before I put the mixture in, but I’m using silicone muffin pans, so I can do that.  Sprinkle cheese on top and pop them into a preheated 350° oven for about half an hour.  I ended up turning the broiler on over them for the last little bit, just to crisp up the cheese on top, but in terms of aesthetics, it didn’t matter because I finished them off with a swath of tomato sauce and served them with a green salad.  Mr. Chili, Bean, and I LOVED them (Punk was babysitting and didn’t eat dinner with us tonight).  These are absolutely going into the Chili Family dinner rotation.

Oh yum, indeed!

image credit

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