Monday, April 11, 2011

Japanese croquettes

We needed some munchies before we trekked off to the Hunter Valley, so I decided to whip up some Japanese croquettes so that Cheesecake Boy would have ample energy to drive us up.  I am crazy about croquettes, but I am particularly smitten with Japanese croquettes due to their sweet but savoury taste.  Not many Japanese restaurants offer this dish and when they do it's a must order for me, so I was super excited when I came up across this fantastic recipe from Sumo Kitchen.

I have modified the recipe from Sumo Kitchen, and this should make 10-12 large and fluffy croquettes.

Ingredients for the filling

5 medium to large potatoes
1 medium brown onion
1 large carrot
250g pork mince
4 tablespoons of white sugar
2 tablespoons of sake
2 tablespoons of mirin
8 tablespoons of soya sauce
White pepper
Vegetable oil

Ingredients for the coating and frying

3 eggs
Panko bread crumbs
Plain flour
White pepper
Vegetable oil for shallow frying

Sauces for serving

Japanese mayonnaise
Okonomiyaki or tonkatsu sauce

Method for the filling
  1. Peel the potatoes and cut into quarters.
  2. Place the potatoes pieces into a pot of salted cold water and boil until tender.
  3. When the potatoes are tender, drain the potatoes and leave to cool.
  4. Peel and dice the brown onion and carrot.
  5. Now heat up a saucepan and add a dash of vegetable oil.  
  6. When the oil is hot, add all the pork mince into the saucepan, then with a wooden spoon separate the pork mince and cook evenly.
  7. Once the pork mince is nice and brown, add the diced brown onion and carrot and let it cook for a few minutes.
  8. Add and stir in the white sugar, sake, mirin, soya sauce, salt and white pepper to season into the saucepan and let the mixture cook until the vegetables are tender, but do not dry out the sauce.
  9. Once the vegetables are tender, turn off the stove and set aside the saucepan.
  10. Ensure that the slightly cooled potatoes are thoroughly drained and then use a potato masher  to mash up the cooled potatoes, ensuring that there are no lumps. 
  11. Place the mince mixture into the mashed potatoes and mix together.  Make sure you also add in the excess sauce, as this will give the croquettes their flavour.
  12. With the combined mixture, roll a couple of tablespoons at a time into round oblong-like croquette shapes with your hands.  This will be easier to shallow fry.

Method for the coating and frying
  1. Now roll the molded croquette fillings into plain flour, making sure you don't miss a spot.  Otherwise, the egg mixture will not stick to the croquette.
  2. Crack the three eggs in a bowl and add a dash of salt and white pepper.  Whisk this egg mixture and then roll the croquettes in the egg mixture accordingly.
  3. Liberally coat the croquettes in panko breadcrumbs.
  4. In a heated, large and deep saucepan our in enough vegetable oil to shallow fry the croquettes.  
  5. Once the oil is hot enough, quickly but carefully place the crumbed croquettes in for frying.  Turn the croquettes to ensure an even golden coat when frying.
  6. When the croquette is golden brown, place on paper towel to drain excess oil.

To serve

Finally, plate up the crunchy and golden croquettes and serve with sauces of your choice and dig in.  I used Japanese mayonnaise and okonomiyaki sauce. 

These are best right after frying, as the croquettes have a wonderfully crunchy exterior and the soft fluffy interior complement each other beautifully.  This is perfect comfort food, that's definitely a favourite at our place.

Happy cooking and eating, Dumpling Girl.


susan said...

they look delicious! I don't usually cook fried things, as I don't like to deep fry, but I am all for shallow frying!

Dumpling Girl said...

Hi Susan, thank you. I also much prefer shallow frying as well, much safer and less cleaning up.

Anonymous said...

yummo, these look so delicious. I will have to try the recipe (or, failing that, the restaurant). Such a big fan of fried Japanese food. R

Dumpling Girl said...

Hello R, you could make these easily, since you are still promising us that Adriano Zumbo V8 cake, lol.

Two fit and fun gals said...

oooh i luv these they are so good!

Dumpling Girl said...

Hello Two fit and fun gals, I love these too, they are so yummy.

Rita (mademoiselle délicieuse) said...

Yum! And serious props to you for deep-fryinng - boiling oil makes me cower in fear =p

Dumpling Girl said...

Hello mademoiselle délicieuse, I think after the first time the fear of deep frying goes away :). Shallow frying is a good place to start though. I just make sure there is no water around and I truly concentrate, lol.