Anything deep-fried and filled with cheese is delicious, but when you add ham to the equation? Even better. These croquetas, John’s riff on the classic Spanish tapas, kind of remind me of a French Croque Madame sandwich because we used prosciutto and Gruyère cheese. (The classic uses serrano and manchego, also incredible.) I love the smoky paprika-based mayo for dipping, which has a hint of spice from the cayenne and tang from the sherry vinegar.
P.S. This is part of John’s Valentapas menu, a perfect tapas night for two. But it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day to enjoy these bites!
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ cup all purpose flour
⅔ cup whole milk
¼ cup grated Gruyère cheese
2 thin slices prosciutto, chopped
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 cups vegetable oil, for frying
1 Pinch grated nutmeg
+ Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Makes ½ cup
½ cup mayonnaise
½ teaspoon Spanish sweet smoked paprika
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
+ A few drops (⅛ teaspoon) sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
A one-bite delight that’s cheesy, crispy, and a little sweet.
A little spicy, a lot garlicky, and–surprise!—made with John’s rosé.
Do you think “sandwich” sounds as exotic to Spanish people as “bocadillo” does to us? Cuz they mean the same thing.