Indulge in the exquisite Spanish delicacy: Croquetas de Bacalao. This traditional appetizer is hailed for its crispy exterior and creamy interior, created with the most exquisite salt cod that has been an integral part of Spanish cuisine for centuries.
The preparation process is simple and fuss-free. The cod is boiled, tenderized, and shredded into thin flakes before combined with the velvety bechamel sauce. Rolled into balls and coated with breadcrumbs, the Croquetas are perfectly fried until crispy.
Created using readily available ingredients like flour, milk, olive oil, eggs, breadcrumbs, and vegetable oil, all the recipe components one can easily acquire from any grocery store. This easy-to-follow recipe can be completed within hours.
Not only does it serve as an entree, but also the perfect pairing for any side dish. Croquetas de Bacalao is more than just a savory delight. It’s also the epitome of Spain’s culinary excellence.
- Croquetas de Bacalao is a popular Spanish dish made from salt cod and bechamel sauce.
- Bacalao is a staple in Spanish cuisine due to its long shelf life and versatility.
- The dish requires simple ingredients and can be served as an appetizer or main course.
WHAT IS CROQUETAS DE BACALAO?
Bacalao, a.k.a. salt cod, is cherished in Spanish & Latin American cuisine. Fresh cod goes through a process of salting/drying which adds flavor & ultimately preserves it for consumption. Its history dates back to sixteenth-century sailors who relied on it as a protein source on long journeys. Today, dishes like croquetas de bacalao, bacalao guisado & bacalao a la vizcaina stand testament to its versatility!
Bacalao is a superfood in lean protein, heart-healthy omegas, and other essential nutrients. However, it’s sodium-loaded, so caution is vital.
When shopping, be selective – opt for fillets that are firm and evenly colored. High-quality fish can be sourced from a specialist fishmonger. Overall, bacalao is a unique and delicious ingredient that can add depth and flavor to your recipes!
HOW TO MAKE CROQUETAS DE BACALAO
¼ cup olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
300 gr. cod fish
100 gr. all-purpose flour
600 ml. milk
2 eggs, beaten
½ cup breadcrumbs
½ cup flour
2 cups vegetable oil
1 — In a non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the onion and garlic until translucent.
2 — Add the cod and cook for a couple of minutes.
3 — Add the flour and cook for a couple more minutes.
4 — Add the milk and stir until thoroughly combined. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently so it doesn’t stick to the bottom.
5 — Transfer the mixture to a paper-lined baking tray and spread it into a rectangle – it should be around ½ inch thick. Cover it with a wrap so it doesn’t dry.
6 — Refrigerate for 1 hour or until it hardens.
7 — Cut the mixture into cubes ( 1 ½ inches).
8 — Coat each cube in the flour, then in the eggs, and lastly in the breadcrumbs. Use your hands to form them into a ball.
9 — Heat the oil to 180ºC and fry them until golden brown on each side.
10 — Transfer to kitchen towels to remove excess grease and serve.
Croquetas de bacalao is a delicious and versatile dish that can be served in various ways. Here are a few ideas for how to serve them:
- As an appetizer: Croquetas de bacalao is a perfect appetizer for any occasion. Serve them with a dipping sauce, such as aioli or romesco, for a tasty and satisfying snack.
- As a main course: Croquetas de bacalao can also be served as a main dish, accompanied by a salad or roasted vegetables. They are filling and flavorful, making them an excellent option for a hearty meal.
- As a tapa: In Spain, croquetas de bacalao are often served as a tapa (small plate). Pair them with a glass of wine or a cold beer for a delicious and authentic Spanish experience.
- With breakfast: Believe it or not, croquetas de bacalao can also be served for breakfast! In Spain, it is common to have a small breakfast of coffee and a pastry, and croquetas de bacalao can be a tasty and savory alternative.
No matter how you choose to serve them, croquetas de bacalao will surely be a hit with your guests. They are easy to make, can be prepared in advance, and are always crowd-pleasers.
STORAGE AND REHEATING
To freeze Croquetas de Bacalao, place them on a baking sheet and let them freeze completely. Then transfer them to an airtight container or a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to three months.
When reheating Croquetas de Bacalao, we recommend using an oven or a toaster oven. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and place the refrigerated or frozen Croquetas de Bacalao on a baking sheet. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until crispy on the outside and heated through.
If you’re in a hurry, you can use a microwave to reheat Croquetas de Bacalao. Place them on a microwave-safe plate and heat on high for 30 seconds to a minute.
Avoid reheating Croquetas de Bacalao in a frying pan or on the stove, as this can make them oily and ruin their crispy texture.
TIPS AND NOTES
- If you find the dough hard to manipulate, try refrigerating them more so they are easier to handle.
- Don’t try to shape them into balls before coating them, and clean your hands several times while shaping them. This will help you form them.
- Use fresh cod fish for the best flavor and texture.
- Be patient when cooking the mixture of cod, flour, and milk. It needs to cook for at least 10 minutes to thicken correctly.
- Refrigerate the mixture for at least an hour before shaping and frying the croquettes. This will help them hold their shape and prevent them from falling apart in the hot oil.
- Cut the mixture into cubes before coating them in flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs. This will make it easier to shape them into balls.
- Heat the oil to 180°C and fry the croquettes until golden brown on each side. Use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a paper towel-lined plate to remove excess grease.
- Serve the croquetas de bacalao hot with a side of aioli or your favorite dipping sauce.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I make croquetas de bacalao with potatoes?
Croquetas de bacalao with potatoes can be easily made by boiling diced potatoes until they soften, mashing them up, and blending them with shredded salt cod, sautéed onions, garlic, and other seasonings.
After mixing, take small portions of the mixture and create cylinder-shaped forms. Cover them in breadcrumbs and fry until golden browning. The outcome? Delicious croquetas that can be served hot and enjoyed immediately!
What are some variations of the traditional bacalao croquettes recipe?
There’s no shortage of delicious takes on the classic bacalao croquette recipe. Elevate the taste by using some finely chopped parsley, red pepper, or even chorizo to the mix. Your taste buds will thank you! To make the béchamel sauce richer, try blending milk with cream instead of just milk.
What is the best way to serve salt cod croquettes?
In Spain, salt cod croquettes are a popular tapa or appetizer served alone or with dip sauces like aioli or romesco. A side of zesty lemon wedges comes with the dish to add acidity, accentuating the delectable flavors and textures.
Can I use fresh cod instead of salt cod for croquetas de bacalao?
Although the conventional ingredient in croquetas de bacalao is salt cod, one can opt for fresh cod as an alternative. However, it is essential to note that the texture and taste of the croquettes will differ when using fresh cod.
What are some popular side dishes to serve with croquetas de bacalao?
Pair croquetas de bacalao with delicious sides like patatas bravas, Spanish tortillas, or a mixed green salad. Wash it down with a crisp white wine or cold beer. Enjoy!
What are the three most common types of croquettes in Spain?
Spain’s croquettes are renowned for their delectable taste, with croquetas de jamón (ham croquettes), croquetas de pollo (chicken croquettes), and croquetas de bacalao (salt cod croquettes) being the top three popular varieties. These tapas dishes boast unique flavors and textures that numerous individuals relish.
Croquetas de Bacalao is an exquisite Spanish delicacy, both easy to make and delectable. These crispy, creamy treats can be a delicious appetizer or hearty main. With salt cod and bechamel sauce as their key ingredients, Croquetas de Bacalao offers a flavor-packed adventure in every bite.
Rest assured – this dish may sound fancy, but it’s simple to prepare, with all the ingredients readily available at your local grocery store. Dip them in aioli or romesco to elevate the experience. Trust us: your guests will be wowed by the total concentration of flavors. Croquetas de Bacalao level up every occasion!
Looking for a new and exciting appetizer to serve alongside your croquetas de bacalao? Allow us to provide you with a world of options to choose from. Delight yourself with each bite, and discover your new favorite.
For enthusiasts of Spanish cuisine, our collection of 50 Tasty Spanish Appetizer Recipes is a must-try! This delicious roundup features classic dishes like tortilla española and patatas bravas alongside modern twists on traditional favorites.
Croquetas de Bacalao Recipe
- Cutting board
- Slotted spoon
- Non-stick skillet
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 300 g cod fish
- 100 g all-purpose flour
- 600 ml milk
- 2 eggs beaten
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 cups vegetable oil
- In a non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the onion and garlic until translucent.
- Add the cod and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Add the flour and cook for a couple more minutes.
- Add the milk and stir until thoroughly combined. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently so it doesn’t stick to the bottom.
- Transfer the mixture to a paper-lined baking tray and spread it into a rectangle – it should be around ½ inch thick. Cover it with a wrap so it doesn’t dry.
- Refrigerate for 1 hour or until it hardens.
- Cut the mixture into cubes ( 1 ½ inches).
- Coat each cube in the flour, then in the eggs, and lastly in the breadcrumbs. Use your hands to form them into a ball.
- Heat the oil to 180ºC and fry them until golden brown on each side.
- Transfer to kitchen towels to remove excess grease and serve.