A croquette is a small bread- crumbed deep fried food roll. It contains mashed potato, minced meat or fish as the main ingredient and is mixed with herbs and seasoning, dipped in beaten egg, rolled in bread crumbs and deep fried. Meat croquettes in North India are also called Kebabs, whereas in the South they are called ‘cutlets’ and are served as an appetizer among the Christian communities of Kerala and Goa.
All of us at home are crazy about minced beef cutlets – as they are known in Kerala. Mary, our house help prior to all our children coming home for holidays, buys meat and fish, seasons it, shapes it and stores it – all ready to fry. The seasoning she uses – till date none of us have learnt the magic ingredients that goes into making of those cutlets – the reason being when the same cutlets are made at home, all I can hear in terms of disapproval – there is something missing mom! Not like the ones we get in Mamas house. Wasted effort!
While making potato croquettes, care should be taken to see that water does not seep into the potato while boiling. Potatoes have to be boiled in their skin whole and should NOT be cut in half. As there is no cooking involved, the mixture should be as dry as possible to avoid splitting during frying.
Below is a recipe I follow diligently very often to turn out some awesome chilly cheese croquettes.
- Potatoes 2-3
- Melted herb butter -1 tbsp
- Breadcrumbs- 1/2 cup
- Cheese 2-3 cubes (grated)
- Green chilli finely minced – 2-3
- Coriander leaves or cilantro minced-2 tbsp
- Lime juice -1 tsp
- Flour -1/2 cup
- Water- as required to make a thin paste with the flour above or
- Beaten egg – 1
- Breadcrumbs to coat
- Oil to fry
- Boil potatoes with skin. Remove skin and mash when hot.
- Add all the ingredients and mix well. Test for seasoning and shape into croquettes.
- Chill for an hour to firm up.
- Make a thin paste with flour and water.
- Just before serving, dip croquettes in flour paste or beaten egg, roll in breadcrumbs and deep fry in hot oil till brown. Remove and drain them on absorbent paper.
- Serve with sauce / dip of your choice.
Chefs tips and variations:
- For spinach croquettes you can add a bunch of boiled and puréed Spinach to 2 boiled potatoes (big) – the spinach has to be just steamed and then puréed. No water should be added.
- For corn and potato croquettes you can coarsely grind 1/2 a cup of fresh corn kernels and add it to the mashed potato.
- The oil has to be really hot so that the croquettes are nice and crispy, it has to be chilled for an hour before frying.
- In case you find the mixture not firm enough, add 1/4 – 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs more and chill thoroughly.
- Serves 6-8.
You just can’t stop with one! Bon appetite!
Till my next post