croquetas españolas


Croquetas in Spain are a diurnal tapas dish that is enjoyed by one and all.  They come in all flavorings – canned tuna, boiled egg and ham, chicken, foie gras, smoked salmon, fish, pork, jamón serrano, shrimp, cheese; the possibilities are endless.  They’re typically served at room temp with or without a sauce and they represent the perfect example of traditional, old-school Spanish fare, served in every household and restaurant.  The liquid for the conventional béchamel can be reinforced with stock, mixed with milk.

Just like here in the US we have days celebrating food dishes, in Spain the 16thof January celebrates National Croqueta day.

And for a bit of historical trivia, they originated in France and were served at the court of king Louis XIV in 1691.









2 shallots – finely chopped

2 garlic cloves – minced

½ LB of Spanish chorizo – minced

¼ LB of smoked bacon – minced

2 slices of smoked pork – minced

½ liter of milk and chicken stock


Fresh cracked pepper pinch of salt

2 eggs beaten in a shallow plate

Seasoned breadcrumbs


In a deep-frying pan, throw in the bacon and render the fat.  Drain some of the bacon fat and add the garlic and shallots and sauté for a few minutes.  Incorporate the chorizo and minced smoked pork.  Cook down for about 5-6 minutes.

In a saucepan, add a bit of butter and toast the flour to render the raw taste.  Add the milk whisking constantly until you have obtained a thick béchamel.  Season with salt and pepper and a pinch of fresh grated nutmeg.  Add the chorizo mixture and mix well.  Pour the béchamel onto a cookie sheet and allow it to set – preferably in the fridge.  When it has set, cut a grid of rectangular squares.  Grab a square form the croquettes rolling them in your hands to make a small football.  Dip into the egg and the breadcrumbs.  Fry in some oil turning them frequently to ensure they are become golden brown on all sides.


Dijon mustard

Zest and juice of 1 lime

½ TSP sweet smoked Spanish paprika


Mix the sauce ingredients and serve along with the croquetas.


This is a laborious recipe, so make enough to freeze.  Not only do they make an amazing appetizer but are superb with a salad and served for a light lunch and brunch.   Freeze them formed but not fried and when you are ready to use them, defrost them before placing them in the eggwash and breadcrumbs.  If you fry them frozen, the likelihood that they’ll burn before the interior is cooked is high.

Best oil for frying them is olive oil, as they don’t get too oily.

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