Skip to content

Crispy Quinoa Cakes with Chorizo & Shrimp

September 17, 2013


The food blog Food52 is generally pretty reliable. Some recipes (their ricotta cake & their pear soup, for example) are simply outstanding. Almost as important, it’s very rare to find a flop and quite often even the recipes that don’t totally wow me nevertheless successfully inspire me to try something new.

Such was the case with a quinoa cake recipe I spotted there recently. It called for browning the quinoa in butter before cooking it, then adding some spices & binders to form a thick batter, frying the batter up as cakes, and finally, serving the cakes with a freshly prepared salsa.

The preparation inspired me to create this shrimp & chorizo quinoa cake. It’s deliciously crispy, spicy & nutty.

You’ll Need:

1 cup quinoa
3 tbs butter, divided into 2 equal portions
2 cups water
1/2 cup diced sweet onion
3 oz dried chorizo, diced (about 1/2 cup)
8 raw medium peeled & deveined shrimp, diced (about 1/2 cup)
1 scallion, minced
1 tsp minced garlic
2 eggs
1/4 cup flour
3 tbs grated Romano cheese
3 tbs canola oil

A medium saucepan with a lid
A large mixing bowl
A large frying pan
Wooden spoon
Slotted spoon
A roasting pan lined with paper towels


1. Melt 1 1/2 tbs of the butter in a medium saucepan.

2. Add the quinoa and brown over medium heat, stirring with the wooden spoon frequently.

3. Add 2 cups water, bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer, cover and cook about 15 – 20 minutes, until the water is fully absorbed.

4. Remove the quinoa and reserve it in the large mixing bowl.

5. In the same saucepan, brown the diced chorizo & sweet onion over medium heat, stirring often.

6. Remove the chorizo & onion with a slotted spoon, reserving the oil released by the chorizo in the pan. Put the chorizo & onion into to the bowl holding the cooked quinoa.

7. In the same saucepan, sauté the diced shrimp briefly, just until they turn pink.

8. Add the cooked shrimp to the bowl holding the quinoa, chorizo & onion.

9. Allow the mixture to cool, then add the eggs, flour, minced scallion, and Romano cheese. Season with 1/2 tsp ground pepper.

10. Allow the mixture to rest in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

11. In the large frypan, heat the canola oil & remaining 1 1/2 tbs butter over medium high heat until it starts to shimmy.

12. Drop fist sized portions of the quinoa cake batter into the pan, taking care not to crowd the pan. (Yield: 8 cakes).

13. Flatten each cake slightly with the back of the spatula & allow to cook undisturbed for about 5 – 7 minutes per side, or until very well browned.

14. Remove to paper towel lined roasting pan to drain excess oil.

15. Serve with a simply dressed fresh salad.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: