The best potato croquettes I ever had were some gloriously creamy things with cheese and ham in the middle. Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside – as a good croquette should be – with cheese oozing out from the centre when you broke into them. They were made even better by the fact that the restaurant I was in was exceptionally nice. It was a very fancy-looking place in Tokyo, during one of my visits there, and the entire place was covered in black marble. The lighting was dim, the voices hushed, and it had a stream and pond running through the whole restaurant, with frosted glass walkways taking you over the water to your seats.
I don’t remember anything else about what I ate there – the croquettes have stuck in my mind because they were amazing. You’d think it shouldn’t be so hard to recreate such a thing, but you’d be wrong. I’ve tried a number of times over the years to make a croquette as good as those that I ate that evening but I’ve never succeeded. Eventually I decided that perhaps I wasn’t approaching the task in the right way. After all, such a croquette has many things contributing to its success; at the very core, you have to get the cheese right for the centre. After this you have to get a really good creamy mashed potato and then coat them in the right way before getting the oil temperature right for frying.
As a result, I decided to try and master the basic concept of croquettes first, before trying to recreate something from so long ago which holds such delicious memories. I happened to have a load of cooked beetroot after seeing them cheap at the store and I sure love beetroot as you may know so after thinking for a bit, I came up with…
Beetroot and Potato Croquettes
These worked very well, even if you’re not a beetroot fan. I say it every time, but the beetroot flavour isn’t overly apparent here so I think anyone could enjoy these, but some people are real beet haters so I guess I’ll never be able to win over everyone.
My wife suggested that these might also be great with crumbled feta in the middle with the beetroot. I think that’s an excellent suggestion since beetroot and feta go together very well, so by all means try this if you have a chance – I know that I will next time.
The sauce isn’t anything special so rest assured that I’m not holding back on you. I mixed a bit of mayonnaise and sriracha together and although I’ve no doubt it would have been better with a “proper” sauce, this one does work well. I can also confirm that they are great when served with hummus as I had this combination for lunch the very next day.
As you can see my shaping technique still needs a bit of work, especially when it comes to putting the filling in but the beetroot and potato croquettes were good so I hope you’ll have a chance to give them a try. Have a wonderful day everyone; I’ll be back soon with the next instalment in my “Typically Swedish” posts and then will share a new recipe in the post after that.
Beetroot and Potato Croquettes
- 4 - 6 large Potatoes depending on size
- 2 large cooked Beetroots
- 50 g Butter
- 200 ml Milk
- 2 tsps Salt
- 2 tsps Freshly-ground Black Pepper
- 2 Eggs
- 100 g Panko breadcrumbs
You'll also need500ml of Sunflower or Canola oil for frying
- Start off by peeling the potatoes and chopping them into chunks. Place into a large pan of water and bring to the boil. Once boiling, cook for about 10 minutes until soft enough to run a fork or skewer through.
- Drain the potatoes and mash them well together with the butter, milk, salt, and black pepper. Set aside to allow to cool slightly.
- While the potatoes are cooling, mash the beetroot well in a separate bowl.
- Taking small handfuls of mashed potato, roll into a ball and press your thumb into the middle. Spoon some of the mashed beetroot into the hole and then seal by pressing the sides of the ball to cover the hole. Roll to form a ball again and then flatten gently. Set the ball aside on some baking paper.
- Keep going until you've used up all the potato and beetroot and then crack the two eggs into a bowl and whisk together.
- Pour the oil into a large pan and then start to heat up. Meanwhile, place the panko into a bowl and then turn the croquettes over one by one in the egg until well coated and then transfer to the panko, turning to coat.
- Once the oil has reached approximately 160 degrees Celsius then place the croquettes, a few at a time, into the oil. Fry until golden brown all over, turning if necessary. Remove from the oil and set to drain on kitchen paper before frying the next batch.
- Serve as a starter or side dish with a sauce of your choice and enjoy!
You can crumble in some feta cheese with the beetroot for an alternative recipe, or even add grated onion into the potato. There are many ways you can adapt this recipe.
Well, you are right that you won’t win me over on this one. ;)I will say that they do look perfectly fried though, and the ones you described from the restaurant sound heavenly! I’m all for gooey cheese. 🙂 I’m looking forward to your typically Swedish post. Have a great weekend Charles!
Thanks Kristy… you’re going to get a kick out of the “Swedish” post. Maybe the Swedes won’t be so happy that I’m trash-talking their stuff, but you’ll see that they deserve it when you read the post! 😀
Japanese croquettes or korokke … yummy. As to the beets, well, it’s still something I have to try along with rutabagas. 🙂 I remember your referring to those ham and cheese croquettes and your fondness for a mayo based dip, when I made my chicken ones.
If only I didn’t have this thing about deep frying I’d be doing it more often.
Meh, you’re not missing much with rutabagas. Same with kohlrabi… I’d keep the greens and cook them, but the root… nah.
Eva Taylor says
I knew the beet root hater was my friend Kristy! I, on the other hand love beet root! Even the golden beets are rather lovely but I’m particularly smitten with the gorgeous colour the red beetroot gives the centre of the croquettes! I bet some brie would be amazing oozing out of the centre of this delightful dish. Would you serve it as an appetizer or part of a meal as a side? Perhaps this might be a little better tolerated by the beetroot haters if you roasted the beets instead of boiling them, they become very sweet and their earthiness is much more subtle.
Mm, brie would work great, nice idea, thanks! I served them, on this occasion, as a side, but I think if you’re skilled enough (which I’m sure you are) to make them smaller and a bit more dainty, they’d work fantastically as a starter. I’m endowed with sausage-fingers, so “me” and “dainty” don’t really go well together :D.
Hotly Spiced says
I love croquettes too. I haven’t had them with ham and cheese but those that you had in Tokyo sound incredible. I also haven’t had them with beetroot! Doesn’t the beetroot give them beautiful colour. I love the sound of your dipping sauce – simple but it would enhance the croquettes beautifully xx
Oh, cheese and ham croquettes… it’s the stuff of dreams! You have to give it a try. If I’m ever able to crack the recipe then I’ll be sure to share it here!
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
These look wonderfully crisp, I love the panko coating!
Thanks Laura – panko is great stuff isn’t it?!
Maureen | Orgasmic Chef says
This recipe is like a gift from a secret santa. I just love it!
LOL, that’s a great description! 😀
These make the prettiest croquettes with the bright beetroot center. I certainly wouldn’t have thought of this, and have voiced not being a fan of beets in the past, but I am coming around! I’ve had some really good preparations with beets in the last year, most notably a beet pastrami, and I think these croquettes sound really good…especially with the feta idea. 🙂
Glad to hear you’re coming around… beets are awesome! So much hate is heaped on them around the world but they really do rock!
Kelly @ Inspired Edibles says
Your croquettes look gorgeous Charles! I find the beets such a fresh and lively idea here and agreed, some feta would be a great pairing. I know what you mean about getting an idea in your head from a place you’ve visited… those culinary memories cut deep into the heart and soul 😉 — good for you for pursuing the dream and executing them beautifully.
Thanks Kelly. I had a wonderful Valentine’s day starter on the 14th… I’m going to steal the idea and develop something similar myself because it was great! Will share it here. Shame about the main course… it was diabolical and we ended up having to go to a burger joint afterwards because we were still hungry (romantic, huh?).
Isn’t if funny how we remember the most delicious thing we ate in a restaurant and totally forget about the other items? 🙂 Well, I do remember that you love beetroot and you may or may not remember that I’m not a fan. However, these croquettes do look quite appetizing and I love your wife’s suggested of the feta. Maybe I can get my sister to make these for me. She loves beetroot so just in case…:)
Hi MJ – fear not, the beetroot was far from overwhelming in these, so I think even the staunchest hater would find them at the least “passable”. 🙂
Shashi @ RunninSrilankan says
Oh wow – these croquettes are gorgeous! I don’t think your shaping technique needs any work at all! I love beets and gosh – these are stunning! Your wife’s idea of feta sounds incredible too! I cannot stop looking at the cut up croquette – just wow!
Thanks Shashi – I always want to try and make them smaller but I think my hands are too big, lol!
Bam's Kitchen says
Charles, you might even get teenagers to eat their veggies if you served it up as a croquettes. I might even try it with spinach or other veggies I need to put undercover. Great idea. Take care
“Undercover” veggies – I like the name of that BAM 😀
Wow! My favorite food with interesting twist. Nice color in the middle. I mentioned you before but my husband loves beets so he will love this idea…better yet, I will surprise him with this new croquet recipe.
Hi Nipponnin – it’s nice to think there are other beet lovers in the world… I think I’m a bit obsessed with them. I must surely have the biggest collection of beet recipes out of many people! I will post yet another beet recipe soon, haha!
Hey, This post is looking so good and Amazing! A very well made post with beautiful pictures. I’ve bookmarked this special recipe of yours and would love to give it a shot soon. Thanks for sharing your well prepared and presented posts. Shall look forward to your next post.
Have a wonderful week ahead. Take care.
Thanks & Regards, Sonia!!!
Thanks Sonia! Hope you’re having a good day!
[email protected] says
I must make these, even if it’s just for the colour in the middle of the corquettes…how gorgeous they look! Mayo and Sriracha work just fine as a sauce!
Thanks Minnie, they were very enjoyable – would recommend!
I’m relieved to see beetroots again! (If I don’t see beetroots here for several weeks I will start wondering what’s wrong with you 😉 ). The croquettes look beautiful and are perfectly shaped (nothing wrong with your shaping technique!). The beetroot’s colour makes them so cute, you might convert many beet haters with these!
(PS Are you sure the Japanese croquettes were made with potatoes: what you describe – the super soft creamy filling etc. – fits more the kind of korokke made with thick custard (yes, it’s possible, I think it has Spanish origins, but I have been too scared to try it at home: it must be horribly difficult!). I prepare only potato korokke: much much easier!
LOL, just to put your mind at ease I will post another beetroot recipe again in a week or so… I made something quite nice the other day and decided to post about it at the last minute so had to quickly take some photos before my wife at them all!
The croquettes were definitely made with potato… I could never forget them. Potato, ham, cheese… the stuff of dreams – I never heard of this “custard korokke” before… sounds, as you say, frightfully difficult to make!
Karen (Back Road Journal) says
I believe that you might change some people’s attitude about beetroot with this recipe Charles…the croquettes look so crispy and delicious. 🙂
I hope so Karen – I’m on a beetroot mission 😉
Anneli Faiers says
They look so cool with that purple in the middle! Very funky. I love the sound of adding feta. I bet these are hard to stop eating.
Thanks Anneli – they made a great side, would be good as a started as well though!
Oh these look so good! I know what you mean about the illusive croquette! I have never made one as good as some I’ve tried! Your wife is right, Beetroot and feta would be a delicious combination too.
Hi GG, I’m gonna keep trying… one day I’ll crack the croquette!
Nami | Just One Cookbook says
Beetroot in the middle of croquettes is such a beautiful idea! I like the cheese addition too! I’ve only made Japanese style croquettes before but I’d love to try this recipe. It’s too pretty and delicious to miss out!
Thanks Nami – this is probably nothing on a really good Japanese croquette… my hands just aren’t meant for “careful” cooking, but I try my best 😀
I’m so sad. I didn’t have time to make this yet. It’s still looks so good. I hope I have time this week. Time is getting away from me lately.
Don’t I know that feeling… never seem to have time for anything right now!