Serrano Ham and Manchego Croquettes with Paprika Aioli

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Serrano Ham and Manchego Croquettes with Paprika Aioli

Servings 20

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • cups whole milk
  • pinch of grated nutmeg
  • pinch white pepper
  • 1/3 cup serrano ham, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup grated Manchego cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chives, minced
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 cups canola or olive oil, for frying
  • Smoked Paprika Aioli
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, warm oil and melt butter at medium-low heat. Add flour and cook for 1-2 minutes. Slowly whisk in milk, nutmeg, and pepper. Continue to whisk until it becomes a thick sauce (a roux), 2-3 minutes. Mix in the ham, cheese and chives and continue to cook 2-3 minutes; stirring until mixture is well combined. If mixture is too dry, add a splash more of milk.

  2. Transfer the mixture to an 8×8-inch baking pan and spread out evenly. Let the mixture cool at room temperature, then cover and refrigerate overnight.
  3. When ready to cook, remove filling from refrigerator. Shape mixture into approximately 2-inch balls.
  4. In a bowl, whisk eggs and set aside. In another bowl, mix in the bread crumbs. Dip each croquette in the egg wash and then coat in panko. Transfer shaped croquettes back to refrigerator and chill 15-20 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile to make aioli, mix all ingredients in a small bowl and combine until smooth. Set aside.
  6. In a large pan, heat enough vegetable oil to cover the croquettes completely. Working in batches, fry each croquette until golden brown, approximately 3-4 minutes.
  7. Transfer croquettes to a paper towel lined plate to dry briefly. Serve immediately with paprika aioli. Enjoy!