These Cuban-style ham croquettes are filled with ground ham mixed with a creamy Béchamel sauce and fried to crispy perfection.
10 to 12
4 cups packaged ham
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup onion, finely diced
1 1/3 cups flour, divided
1 cup milk, warmed (plus 1/2 cup if needed)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
2 eggs plus 1 tablespoon water, beaten
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
Oil for frying
In a food processor, blend the ham until fine. Set aside.
In a large pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter and cook onions until translucent. Add salt and pepper. Add 1/3 cup flour and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute until a light brown color, constantly stirring. Add more butter if needed.
Slowly add the milk until it forms a smooth sauce, constantly whisking. Add the nutmeg and ham and season to taste. Simmer on low heat for 4 to 5 minutes.
Transfer mixture to a baking pan, cover with plastic wrap and chill for 1 to 2 hours, or overnight. Once the mixture has chilled, shape into logs about 3 inches long and 1/2 inch thick. (Note: if sauce isn’t thick enough, add 1 cup of breadcrumbs.)
Season each dredging portion with salt and pepper. Roll the ham logs in the egg mixture, remaining flour, and then panko breadcrumbs. Fry over medium-high heat for 3 to 4 minutes or until golden brown.
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