Salt Cod Croquettes - Gluten Free
In Spain croquettes are one of the most typical tapas, usually made with jamon iberico, chicken or salt cod, bound with béchamel sauce, breaded and deep fried. Bacalao is dried and salted cod, also referred to as salt cod or saltfish which has been preserved by drying after salting. To make this fish edible again cover it with water and let soak for approximately three days, changing the water every day. Once soaked the fish becomes tender and delicious, great in pastas, salads, and croquettes.
Yield: approximately 24 x 20-gram Croquettes
Prep time: 3 days for the cod; 2 hours for the croquettes
For the brandade:
600 grams Salt cod
1 Liter 2% Milk
4 Cloves Fresh Garlic
500 ml Pure Olive Oil
For the breading:
2 Cups Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs
1 Cup Gluten Free Flour
Put the salt cod into a bowl or container and cover it with cold water and refrigerate. Replace the water with fresh water every day, after three days drain the water, put the cod into a pot. Add the whole garlic cloves and cover the cod with the milk. Simmer this on medium-low heat until the fish is tender, approximately ten minutes.
While the fish is simmering, heat the olive oil to approximately 50°C. If the oil is too hot the brandade might separate. Once the fish has cooked, take it out of the milk, reserving two cups. Put the cod and garlic into a food processor and puree slowly adding a quarter of the milk alternating with the oil, the result should have a light and fluffy texture. Remove the brandade from the mixer onto a baking tray too cool for at least an hour or overnight.
Weight out twenty-gram pieces of the cold brandade. Place the weighed-out pieces in the freezer for ten minutes, this will make them easier to form as the mixture is quite soft. Set up a breading station with three containers, one for the eggs, one for the gluten free flour, and one for the panko crumbs. Put each brandade piece into the flour first, then the beaten egg, then the breadcrumbs, then once more in the egg and the breadcrumbs. Keep the finished croquettes in the fridge in a sealed container for three days or freeze for later use.
Piquillo pepper puree:
1/4 Cup White Onion
2 Tbsp Butter
1 Cup Roasted Piquillo Peppers, canned
2 Tbsp White Balsamic Vinegar
1 tsp Sea Salt
Dice the onion and put it into a sauce pot with the butter on medium high heat. Sweat the onions until they are soft then add the piquillo peppers. Add the salt and white balsamic vinegar, heat this through to a boil and take it off the heat. Place mixture into a blender and puree it until it is smooth and add salt to taste.
To finish the croquettes:
If frozen pull the croquettes from the freezer thirty minutes before you want to fry them.
On medium high heat add canola oil to a deep pot, only filling the oil about halfway, just enough for the croquettes to be fully submerged. Heat the oil to 365°F. Have a slotted spoon and a tray with a paper towel for the fried croquettes. When the oil is to temperature, lower the croquettes into the oil with the slotted spoon, fry the croquettes until they are golden brown and remove them to drain on the tray. Serve these with the piquillo pepper puree and enjoy!
© Alison MacNeil