Thursday, August 22, 2013

Lisset's Mother's Legendary Croquetas

Many moons ago, I was known by my middle name, and my mother packed my school lunches with homemade goodies I would share with those lucky enough to be called my friends. In time, one lunchbox staple became the stuff of legend: Las croquetas de Sonia. A quarter century later, people (okay, maybe just my old pals Rita and Shirlene) still clamor for the secret recipe. Behold:

4 tbsp. butter
 1 small onion, chopped
4 tbsp. flour (any kind)
1 cup milk
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. each pepper and nutmeg
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 cups ground beef, cooked (just browned or lightly seasoned leftovers is fine)
eggs and bread crumbs for breading
oil for frying (Mazola, one assumes)

1.       Melt butter with onions. Add flour and milk and stir until thickened.
2.       Add salt, pepper, nutmeg, and lemon juice.
3.       Add ground beef.
4.       Mold mixture into croquetas.
5.       Bread by dipping first in egg, then flour.
6.       Fry until golden brown.

Now that we are vegan, she continues to make them, and they are even better. An easy series of subs: vegan butter for butter (we use Earth Balance), unflavored soy milk for milk, soy ground beef for the dead stuff (Boca crumbles are the best), and water mixed with a little of the flour for the eggs. You can also bread with plain flour if you don't find vegan bread crumbs.

Please, do not share this recipe with just anyone. They must be deserving.
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