Easy Italian Potato Croquettes Recipe
Crocchette di patate are crispy, golden potato croquettes usually found in Italian pizzerias and eaten as a snack or appetizer, but they are also easy to make at home with this simple recipe. Join Foodie Sisters in Italy, Valeria and Benedetta, as they whip up some traditional crocchette di patate for the very first time.
As an honored member of the Roman family of fritti, or fried snacks, crocchette di patate are made from smooth, creamy, mashed potatoes encased in a crunchy breadcrumb exterior. They are loved by kids and adults alike and are generally eaten as part of an antipasto in local pizzerias along with supplì (fried rice balls), fiori di zucca (fried zucchini flowers), and filetti di baccalà (battered salt cod). They also make a great aperitivo snack, especially when accompanied by a cold beer or glass of prosecco.
While the idea of making croquettes at home seems complicated, they are surprisingly straightforward to prepare. The potatoes can be boiled in advance (actually this is better as it means that they have time to lose any excess moisture), and you can even shape and coat them beforehand, just keep them in the fridge until you are ready to fry. However, it is important to use old or floury potatoes that contain less water and to boil them whole, with the skins left on, to ensure that they do not absorb extra water.
This is the traditional recipe, from our favorite cookbook ‘Il Talismano della Felicità’ which is made with plain mashed potato seasoned with grated nutmeg, but you could also try variations by adding mozzarella, parmesan, prosciutto, or even a little chili pepper to jazz things up however you like.
Crocchette di Patate
1kg floury or old potatoes
3 egg yolks
2 whole eggs, beaten
Vegetable oil, for frying
Put the whole potatoes, with skins on, into a large pan of cold water. Bring to the boil and cook until soft (you can test with a toothpick or fork). Drain and wrap in a cloth to absorb the excess water.
Remove the skins and mash the potatoes, then heat them in a wide pan along with the butter, mixing until they have completely dried out and the butter has melted. Transfer to a bowl and add the egg yolks, some freshly grated nutmeg, and a seasoning of salt and pepper, use your hands to combine everything until you have a smooth consistency.
Prepare three separate bowls with the flour, whole beaten eggs, and breadcrumbs. Mold the mashed potato into small cylinder shapes then dust them with flour, then dip in the beaten egg, and finally coat well with a layer of breadcrumbs.
When you are ready to cook the croquettes, heat a good amount of vegetable oil in a large saucepan until it reaches about 160°C (320°F) then carefully lower a few croquettes at a time into the hot oil and fry for a few minutes until the coating becomes golden and crispy. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Continue to cook in batches, then be sure to eat them while they are still irresistibly hot and crunchy.