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How to Make Potato Croquettes

Updated on October 6, 2015
Gordon N Hamilton profile image

Gordon has been cooking and experimenting with food since childhood. He loves coming up with new and tasty culinary creations.

Ready to serve potato croquettes
Ready to serve potato croquettes

What are Potato Croquettes?

Potato croquettes are simply an attractive, alternative way of preparing a potato accompaniment for a main meal. Just like French fries or boiled potatoes, they can be served with meat, fish, or even a fairly simple salad. The potato is firstly boiled and mashed before it is shaped, cooled, rolled in golden breadcrumbs and deep fried. The procedure is very similar to the ways in which fish cakes or crab cakes are made. The recipe here is for basic potato croquettes but there are any number of additions which can be made to the mash to provide extra flavour and texture.

Floury or starchy potatoes
Floury or starchy potatoes

Boiling and Mashing the Potatoes for Croquettes

Begin by ensuring you choose a suitable type of potatoes

The first step to making potato croquettes is ensuring you choose a suitable type of potato. Although the potatoes available will vary by geographical location, what is important is that you choose starchy/floury potatoes and not a waxy potato. Ask for advice in your supermarket or store if you are unsure of which type to buy. Getting this right is imperative, as waxy potatoes cannot be properly mashed and will instead simply crush in to small lumps, making it impossible to shape the basic croquettes.

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Potatoes are peeled, chopped and added to cold, salted waterPotatoes are drained and left to steam and dryPotatoes are mashed with a little butter
Potatoes are peeled, chopped and added to cold, salted water
Potatoes are peeled, chopped and added to cold, salted water
Potatoes are drained and left to steam and dry
Potatoes are drained and left to steam and dry
Potatoes are mashed with a little butter
Potatoes are mashed with a little butter

Half a pound of potatoes (gross weight) will make six decent sized croquettes. Begin by peeling the potatoes and chopping them in to one inch chunks. Put them in a deep pot of salted water and put the pot on a high heat until the water begins to boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for around twenty minutes until the potatoes have softened.

Drain the potatoes through a colander or large sieve and return them to the empty pot. It is important not to mash them straight away or you will get mash that is fairly soggy. Instead, leave them to steam for five minutes. The steam represents excess moisture still in the potatoes and releasing this will provide infinitely better final results.

Add just a little butter to the still hot potatoes and mash with a hand masher.

A Hand Masher is Essential for Making Mashed Potatoes - Anything else does not produce the desired effect

It is vital to know that when mashing potatoes to make potato croquettes, a hand masher should always be used. If you use a blender or food processor, you will be left with pureed potatoes which are not so easily shaped in to croquettes because they are wet and mushy.

Shaping the Mashed Potato in to Croquettes

A little practice is all that's required

When the potatoes are mashed, it is time to shape them in to what will become the main bodies of the croquettes. This is done by a process called quenelling. It involves taking two identical spoons and using the spoons to shape the potatoes in to approximate oval shapes. In this instance, dessert spoons were used but tablespoons could be used to create larger croquettes.

How to Quenelle - A simple guide to this food shaping technique

Describing the process of quenelling in words is not so easy but this very short video shows the process in a precise and simple fashion.

Croquette shaped mashed potatoes ready to be refrigerated
Croquette shaped mashed potatoes ready to be refrigerated

When you have quenelled each soon to be croquette to your satisfaction, lay it in a large plastic dish. Very carefully, put one spoon at each end of each croquette and gently squeeze to make more cylindrical shapes. Put the dish in to the refrigerator for at least an hour to firm up the structure of the croquettes.

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Breading and Deep Frying the Potato Croquettes

The final stage in the procedure

Homemade breadcrumbs could be used for making potato croquettes but these supermarket bought golden breadcrumbs usually produce a more attractive and professional looking finish. Scatter around three tablespoons of them on a plate and beat a large egg in a bowl or deep bottomed plate. Dip each croquette firstly in the egg before rolling in the breadcrumbs.

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Beaten egg and golden breadcrumbsEach croquette is firstly dipped in beaten eggThe egg covered croquette is rolled in breadcrumbsBreaded potato croquettes ready to be deep friedDeep fried potato croquettes are drained on kitchen paper
Beaten egg and golden breadcrumbs
Beaten egg and golden breadcrumbs
Each croquette is firstly dipped in beaten egg
Each croquette is firstly dipped in beaten egg
The egg covered croquette is rolled in breadcrumbs
The egg covered croquette is rolled in breadcrumbs
Breaded potato croquettes ready to be deep fried
Breaded potato croquettes ready to be deep fried
Deep fried potato croquettes are drained on kitchen paper
Deep fried potato croquettes are drained on kitchen paper

The croquettes should be deep fried at a fairly high temperature (350F/180C) for four to five minutes until beautifully golden brown. They should then be drained on kitchen paper prior to plating and service.

Homemade Potato Croquettes are Ready to Serve

Homemade Potato Croquettes are Ready to Serve
Homemade Potato Croquettes are Ready to Serve

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      Narcis 2 years ago

      I decided to bake the pottao which allowed me time to go to the store and get some of the ingredients for this dish. I think next time I'll boil the pottao as the final mix seemed on the dry side. I added some chopped cilantro I had on hand, about a half cups worth. I seasoned with salt, pepper, Old Bay, and Chipolte pepper. I made 6 croquettes, each the size of a small burger. We ate 2 of them last night, pan fried. They were quite good and my girlfriend liked them somewhat better than I did. For me, the interior just wasn't quite hot enough (I do like my food piping hot). We'll have two more tonight and I'm going to deep fry them instead.