Spinach and Leek Quinoa Cakes

Sorry for the lack of posting as of late. Between family visiting and being busy at work, lately I have come home exhausted and not very inspired to write. However, the fact that it's now light until 8:00 is helping, and the reappearance of leeks and ramps at the farmer's market is working wonders as well. I picked up some leeks the last time I was there, and was planning on making a quiche lorraine, but decided that these quinoa cakes would be decidedly better for my waistline and would help with my spring resolution to eat healthier. The quiche will have to wait for another day. Spinach and Leek Quinoa Cakes (makes 10-12)

1 cup quinoa

2 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 tablespoon butter

3 large leeks, thinly sliced

8 oz spinach, washed and roughly chopped

1/2 cup parmesan cheese

1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs

1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs

Vegetable oil, as needed

In a small saucepan, bring the quinoa and broth to boil. Reduce to simmer, and cook, covered, until quinoa absorbs all of the broth, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add leeks and cook until soft, about 20 minutes. When almost done, add spinach and cook until just wilted, about 1 minute. Add vegetables to quinoa and mix well. Add parmesan cheese and mix.

Coat sauté pan with vegetable oil and heat over medium. Mix breadcrumbs and panko together on a large plate. Form quinoa mixture into patties, using about 1/2 cup per patty. Coat well with breadcrumb mixture, then sauté until browned on each side, 4-5 minutes. Repeat with remaining mixture. Top with additional parmesan cheese, if desired.