Monday, December 5, 2011

Masala Potato Croquettes

 I was very happy when the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program sent me coupons to try Simply Potatoes.   I have used their products in the past and they are a great help when you need to get dinner on the table quickly.  Simply Potatoes is a line of refrigerated prepared potato dishes. You can choose from several varieties of mash potatoes, hash browns, wedges and sliced potatoes.   I used my coupons to get two of the Country-style mash potatoes. The first package was eaten upon arriving home from the store because I needed to make lunch fast.  I paired the Simply Potatoes Mashed Potatoes with some rotisserie chicken and lunch was on the table in a few minutes.  The 2nd package of mashed potatoes was waiting for me to make something extra special out of them.  I was excited to make these Masala Potato Croquettes.  These spicy croquettes are breaded with an extra crispy coating on the outside and the inside is filled with  fluffy spicy potato, onion and green chilies.  It's always a hit with my family and they were waiting for me to hurry up and take my pictures so they could dive in and enjoy.  My kids and husband devoured the entire plate of potato croquettes with some mango chutney leaving me only some crumbs behind. I guess I should be happy they loved it some much, but they could have left me some.  Good thing I ate a few to taste test right out of the fryer.. it's good to be the cook sometimes.:)

1 package of Country Style Mashed Potatoes
1/2 medium onion chopped finely
2-3 green chilies chopped finely (seeded)
1 Tbs of minced curry leaves
1/2 Tbs of minced fresh mint leaves
1 tsp of Garam Masala Powder
1Tbs ginger/garlic paste
red chili flakes to taste
1/2 tsp of cumin seeds ground by hand
salt to taste and a lot of black pepper
1-2 tsp of fresh lime juice
1 egg for coating
favorite style bread crumbs for coating (I used Panko)

Take your cumin seeds and grind it into a coarse grind.  I like using a mortar and pestle for this step.

 Heat a skillet on medium heat. Add 2-3 tsp of oil and bloom your cumin seeds for a few seconds (careful not to burn)
 Then add your ginger/garlic paste, onions, green chilies, mint and curry leaves.
 Once the onions begin to soften, add your garam masala powder, red chili flakes, salt and pepper.  Lower the heat to medium-low and allow all the ingredients to cook down for a few minutes.

Next add your prepared mash potatoes.  It's easy with the use of Simply Potatoes. No need to boil potatoes or clean potatoes.  I just opened up the package and put it into my pan.. Now these are not like using dehydrated boxed instant potatoes.. they are real mashed potatoes.  :)


Mix the mash potatoes with all the ingredients.  Then add your fresh lime juice 1 teaspoon at a time and taste if you like the flavor.  I used both teaspoons of lime juice in the end.  Taste for seasoning and then turn off the stove.  You need to allow this mixture to really cool down.  I let it sit on the stove for a little while and then put it in the fridge for almost a hour to chill.  Cold potatoes are easier to make into the balls shapes.  

 Make your potato balls about the size of walnuts.
 Then dip them into a well beaten egg and coat the outside.
 Roll them in bread crumbs.  I wanted the outside extra crispy so I used panko breadcrumbs (Extra fluffy Japanese breadcrumbs).
Deep fry in oil for a minute until golden brown. Do no have your oil too hot (about 350 degrees) is best.  
 Drain on a paper towel and then serve.

 I served it with some spicy and sweet mango chutney that complimented the spicy croquettes well.  Enjoy.

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