Get these recipes courtesy of Chef Jim Bologna from the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham.
Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Cakes
• 1 1/2 cups water
• 1 cup quinoa
• 1 large egg, lightly beaten
• 4 to 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
• ¾ cup of cooked mushrooms
• ½ cup of white wine
• Minced thyme and oregano
• Roasted cauliflower florets (1/2 cup)
• 1 roasted heirloom tomato diced
• 1 tablespoon minced garlic
• Flour to help bind
• 4 scallions cut on a bias
• 1 tsp sugar
• Salt and pepper to taste
To cook Quinoa:
Bring water and 1/2 teaspoon salt to a boil in a heavy medium saucepan.
Meanwhile, wash quinoa in 3 changes of water in a bowl, and then drain well in a fine-mesh sieve.
Stir quinoa into boiling water and return to a boil, then simmer, covered, until quinoa is dry and water is absorbed, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and cool, stirring occasionally.
While quinoa is cooking, cook your mushrooms. Place a little oil in a pan and heat at medium high, add your mushrooms and cook until golden brown, add the garlic and the white part of the scallion, then sweat until fragrant. Now add the white wine and cook until almost dry. Finish with thyme and oregano and green part of the scallion.
Fold the mushroom mix and roasted vegetables into the cooked quinoa, fold in the egg and flour if needed. Season to taste.
Line a baking sheet with plastic wrap and lightly brush with oil. Lightly oil a 1-cup dry-ingredient measure. Pack enough quinoa into measure with a rubber spatula to fill it two-thirds full. (If spatula becomes sticky, dip in water). Unmold onto baking sheet and gently pat quinoa into a 4-inch-wide patty with spatula. Make 3 more quinoa cakes, brushing measure with oil each time. Chill cakes, uncovered, at least 15 minutes.
Cook quinoa cakes:
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until it shimmers. Carefully add quinoa cakes and cook, turning once carefully and adding remaining 2 to 3 tablespoons oil, until crisp and golden, 8 to 10 minutes total (pat cakes to reshape with cleaned rubber spatula while cooking if necessary). Transfer to plates.
• 1 1/2-pound head of cauliflower
• 2 tablespoons vegetable oil plus additional for brushing
Preheat oven to 250°F. Using sharp heavy knife and starting at top center of cauliflower head, cut two 1-inch-thick slices of cauliflower, cutting through stem end. Set cauliflower steaks aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in heavy large oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat. Brush cauliflower steaks with additional oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add cauliflower steaks to skillet and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer skillet to oven and bake cauliflower steaks until tender, about 10 minutes.
Roasted Red Pepper Sauce
• 2 large red bell peppers, roasted on open flame
• 1/2 cup chicken stock
• 1/2 cup chopped onion
• 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
• 1 tablespoon ground coriander
• 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
• Salt and pepper to taste
Roast the peppers on an open flame until outside is charred black. Place them in bowl and cover with saran-wrap to steam. When cool enough to handle, peel off skin and char. Then split open and de-seed.
Place a little oil in a sauce pan and sweat onions and garlic, add the peppers and stock, cook on medium-high heat for about 15 minutes. Put in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
Add seasoning and vinegar. If too tart from the vinegar, add a little extra virgin oil.