Deep-Fried Potato Croquettes

"From Ruth Van Waerebeek's "Everybody Eats Well in Belgium Cookbook." Labor intensive, somewhat messy and time-consuming to make, but people rave about these. Golden brown and crunchy on the outside, then mashed potato heaven inside. I've done what Ruth recommends: make the croquettes the day before, and just do the deep frying at dinner time."
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Ready In:
2hrs 30mins
24 croquettes




  • Place potatoes in a large saucepan and add enough cold water to cover the potatoes by at least 1-1/2 inches. Add 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to boil, cover partially, and cook over medium heat until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes and return them to the saucepan. Dry the potatoes by shaking the pan over low heat for a few seconds until all visible moisture is gone.
  • Press the potatoes through a food mill or potato ricer into a mixing bowl. Add the butter, egg yolks, and 1 tablespoon of flour. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Season generously with salt, white pepper and nutmeg. The mixture must be fairly dry or the croquettes will burst during frying.
  • Spread the potato mixture evenly on a nonstick baking sheet and shape into a 10 x 5-inch rectangle that is no more than 1 inch high. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the mixture is quite firm, at least 1 hour.
  • Prepare three bowls: In one, beat the egg whites until they are well mixed. Place the remaining 1 cup flour in the another bowl, and the bread crumbs in the third. Arrange in order: flour, egg whites, bread crumbs.
  • Cut the potato mixture into small rectangles approximately 1 inch wide and 2 inches long. Use fingers and hands to shape them into cylinders. Dip each croquette, one at a time, first into the flour, shaking off the excess, then into the egg whites, and finally into the bread crumbs. Arranged the shaped and dipped croquettes on another baking sheet. At this point the croquettes can be refrigerated, covered, for several hours or overnight. In fact, they will be better if allowed to rest int he refrigerator until the following day. (They can also be wrapped in plastic and frozen for up to 2 months.).
  • Heat the oil in a deep fryer to 380°F Add the croquettes in batches and fry until golden brown on all sides, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve. The finished croquettes can be kept warm in a preheated 300°F oven for up to 20 minutes, but it is best to serve them as soon as possible.

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My most cherished cookbook is Ruth Van Waerebeek's Everybody Eats Well in Belgium. It has been my inspiration for most of our family's special occasions and holiday meals and it was through exploring this book that cooking and entertaining became such a pleasurable hobby for me. The book is out of print, but I contacted Ruth to express my appreciation and ask her permission to include her recipes here. In her words: "My main concern when I wrote this book, was exactly that, that people around the globe would be able to taste these wonderful Belgian flavors! So, I don't have any objection that you post the recipes on the web."
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