If this recipe sounds vaguely familiar to you, then it might be because these croquettes have a similar method to my favorite Smoked Salmon Fish Cakes. Say, what? - you may ask. It’s true – this is a great example of a recipe that works. Over many renditions I finally arrived at a pan-fried cake/patty/croquette recipe which I love. It’s light, crispy and packed with the main ingredient. It’s a winner, and I’m sticking to it.
In this version, the star ingredient is carrot. Its sweetness is nicely balanced by the spice and heat of chile, coriander and cumin. Flecked with green onion and cilantro, the croquettes are light and airy with a satisfying bite. A coating of panko crumbs ensures a crisp exterior, begging for a dip in the sriracha laced yogurt sauce, which is a perfect cooling foil to the warm croquettes.
Spiced Carrot Croquettes with Yogurt Sriracha Sauce
Makes 16 – 1 1/2 inch croquettes
8 large carrots, peeled, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 3/4 cup Panko bread crumbs, divided
2 green onions, ends trimmed, white and green parts minced
1 small red jalapeno or serrano chile pepper, stemmed and seeded, minced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons Greek-style whole milk yogurt
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Vegetable oil for frying
1 cup Greek-style whole milk yogurt
1/2 tablespoon sriracha sauce
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Pinch of salt, to taste
Steam carrots until very soft, 30-40 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and mash. (There should be about 2 cups.)
Place 1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs in a shallow bowl; set aside. Add 1/4 cup breadcrumbs, green onion, chile pepper, cilantro, coriander, cumin, salt and pepper to the carrots. Stir to combine, and then stir in the yogurt and lemon juice. Using a soup spoon, scoop out a spoonful of the carrots. Lightly form into a 1 1/2 inch patty. Gently roll in reserved breadcrumbs to coat. Place on a platter. Repeat with remaining carrots. (Croquettes may be prepared to this point up to 3 hours before cooking. Loosely cover with plastic and refrigerate.)
Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add croquettes in batches. Fry until golden brown, turning once, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel. Repeat with remaining carrots.
To make the sauce, whisk all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Transfer croquettes to a serving plate. Serve with the yogurt sauce and lemon wedges. Garnish with cilantro sprigs.