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Friday, 29 July 2011

Tasty Croquettes....mmmmmmm

There are many variations to croquettes. They can be made with tuna, serrano ham and potato. . .the variations are only limited by your imagination. The Santiago family, traditionally make them with chicken; and we LOVE them.  Our Chicken Croquettes recipe will be released in the cookbook.

Chicken Croquettes

Serrano Ham Croquettes (Croquetas de Jamon Serrano)

1 cup full cream milk
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
2 peppercorns
1 spring of thyme
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons plain flour
a pinch of Smoked Paprika
a pinch of nutmeg
280g Jamon Serrano, finelly chopped
(or 140g each of serrano ham & ham off the bone)
1/2 cup plain flour
2 cups dried bread crumbs
2 eggs, beaten
Sunflower Oil for deep frying.
Salt to taste

Pour the milk into a saucepan together with the chopped onion, bay leaf, peppercorns and thyme, and lightly simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, strain the milk into a bowl (discarding onion and herbs) and allow to cool.
Put the butter in the saucepan and melt on medium-low heat. Add in the flour while stirring vigorously. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. When the flour begins to lightly brown, add the strained milk. Stir while adding the milk to ensure that lumps don't form. Then add the nutmeg and few pinches of smoked paprika. Continue to simmer under low heat.
Place the ham into a preheated, lightly greased frying pan and fry for two minutes, then remove from heat. Add ham to the to the milk-flour mixture and cook until it thickens (usually 2-3 minutes), and then remove from the stove. Refrigerate for a couple of hours until cool.
Shape the cooled mixture and shape into croquettes. With generously floured hands, shape large spoonfuls into the approximate length of a woman's index finger. Dip the croquettes into the beaten egg, and then coat with bread crumbs. Fry the croquettes in plenty of hot oil until golden brown, turning as needed.  A deep-fryer or a fry pan can be used, as long as it holds sufficient oil. ( If shallow frying, use about 3cm of oil.)
Serve warm with Aioli and a salad and enjoy!

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