I love crab cakes and wanted to make a vegetarian cake. Inspired by a panko crusted risotto ball appetizer I saw at a Fresh & Easy holiday party last December, I created these crunchy gluten-free sweet potato parmesan risotto cakes.
Now, you're probably wondering how I made a gluten-free crunchy crust. My secret is the new Sweet Potato flavored Pop Chips. Awhile back, I made gluten-free and egg-free baked coconut chicken nuggets using regular flavored Pop Chips as the breading.
Not only do Pop Chips make for awesome snacks, but ground up in a food processor, the Pop Chips (in any flavor) has a texture like panko and remains crunchy when baked. Several of the Pop Chips flavors are gluten-free and vegan like the Sweet Potato flavor. Check the back label.These are exciting times for gluten-free eaters who want to enjoy a crunchy breading-like experience!
Next, you're probably wondering how I got the cakes to stick together without using egg or soy as a binder. Often in vegetarian recipes, tofu is used as a binder like in veggie burgers. Since I try and eat as little soy as possible outside of organic edamame, I like to get creative.
I took frozen Stahlbush Island Farms sweet potato chunks and blended the potato in a food processor until it was in a semi-chunky paste form and mixed the paste in with the risotto. Also, I cooked the risotto with a less water to make the rice stickier kind of like sushi rice. The risotto and sweet potato paste stick pretty good together.
Ingredients (makes 16-20 cakes):
- 1 box Gluten-free Lundberg Creamy Parmesan Risotto made using less 1/4 cup less water.
- 2 cups Stahlbush Island Farms sweet potato chunks
- 36 Sweet Potato Pop Chips (ground up in a food processor)
- 1 tsp agave nectar
- Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Cook the Lundberg Creamy Parmesan Risotto according to the box and use 1/4 cup less water. The risotto will come out a little more on the dryer side which helps in making the cakes stick together better.
- Warm up the sweet potato chunks in the microwave for about 30 seconds so they are not frozen solid but only slightly warm. Too much heat and the potato will get mushy and the paste will not work.
- Put the sweet potato chunks in a food processor along with the 1 tsp of agave nectar and blend until you get a semi-chunky paste. The nectar sweetens the sweet potato just a tad.
- Put the finished risotto in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes to cool it down and harden the risotto a bit so it's sticky. Mix in the sweet potato paste.
- Form the risotto, sweet potato mix into cakes, and then on a plate roll the cakes in the sweet potato Pop Chips breading.
- Spray non-stick cooking spray on a baking sheet, and place the sweet potato risotto cakes on the baking sheet.
- Bake the cakes on one side for 8 minutes. Turn the cakes over, and bake for another 8 minutes.
Let the cakes cool down. Place some fresh thyme on top of each cake for seasoning. The side sauce I used in the photo is Trader Joe's Sweet Chili sauce.