My adventures with ancient grains and seeds continue! The first time I made this for my husband and me, we were really happy with the results. I promptly invited friends over for later in the week, so I could make it again. At the time, I was calling them Amaranth Griddle Cakes, because of how they are made. My friend was a few days shy of her due date with her first baby. She felt great, and while we were gobbling up this recipe, she said she still felt like she would deliver after her due date (maybe we could even squeeze in another dinner party beforehand!) Well, long story short, after three servings of these amaranth cakes, herb-braised Brussels sprouts, and Old Bay-seasoned rutabaga fries, my friends headed home…and by dinner time the following night, they had a healthy and beautiful baby girl! There is no actual science behind this dinner sending her into labor (so don’t shy away if you’re a mama-to-be) but we affectionately started calling the entrée Amaranth Baby Cakes since it was the last meal out before our friends became a family of three.
A few notes on some of the ingredients below:
- Nutritional Yeast: If you are new to this plant-based life, you’ll quickly learn this is in every vegan kitchen. Like with many ingredients, quality can vary, so sometimes it’s worth an extra buck or two. I consistently use Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast or Red Star Nutritional Yeast because they both have added vitamins, including B12.
- Breadcrumbs: This recipe calls for breadcrumbs, and if I end up purchasing them, I go with Ian’s Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs. A failed attempt at making crackers (I missed that crunch of chips and crackers!) using amaranth flour left me with two baking sheets of crumbs, so instead of wasting anything, I’ve been working my way through this stash whenever a recipe calls for breadcrumbs. If any of your kitchen capers have unexpected outcomes, I encourage you to find the silver lining as well!
- Lentils and Amaranth: I much prefer cooking them both in the pressure cooker (because I’m impatient) but stove top is great too. The fact is, this recipe needs cooked lentils and amaranth, and everyone can get there in their own way.
Amaranth Baby Cakes
Ingredients (makes about 40-45 cakes)
- 1 cup of red lentils (once cooked, makes about 2.5 cups)
- 1 cup of amaranth (once cooked, makes about 2.5 cups)
- 1/4 cup of chopped fresh parsley (tightly packed)
- 1/2 cup of spinach or mixed greens
- 1 onion, diced (about 2 1/4 cups)
- 1 and ½ teaspoons of EnerG Egg Replacer and 2 tablespoons of warm water (or other egg replacer)
- 4 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
- ½ cup breadcrumbs (GF)
- salt and ground pepper, to taste
- some coconut oil
- Cook red lentils and amaranth in presure cooker or on stove top.
- Mix the EnerG Egg Replacer and warm water in a small bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to thicken.
- Saute onion in a bit of oil to soften the flavor before adding to mixture.
- Add all ingredients, except oil to large bowl and mix. If the composition is too moist, add more breadcrumbs. You should have a thick batter, almost able to hold shape.
- Heat some oil in a non-stick griddle, and scoop 1 tablespoon balls on to the hot surface.
- Fry them for a few minutes on each side (or longer, until golden brown).
- Transfer to a cutting board or plate covered with a paper towel, in order to absorb all excess oil prior to serving.
These Amaranth Baby Cakes taste great on their own, and with sauces. We’ve tried it with a spicy aoli (Vegenaise and hot sauce) or whatever salad dressing we’re using on the other half of the plate. How will you dress up your Amaranth Baby Cakes?
Amaranth Baby Cakes with a side salad. This recipe makes 40-45 cakes. Get ready for everyone to want seconds!
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