Croquetas de Pollo, or chicken croquettes, is a Spanish dish of breaded then deep-fried chicken pieces. To make the croquettes, chicken is first cooked then cut into small pieces. The chicken is mixed into a bechamel sauce. The mixture is molded into small finger shaped logs which are dipped into eggs then rolled into breadcrumbs and fried.
Bechamel is one of the five mother sauces of classical French cuisine. Also called white sauce, it is made with butter, flour and milk. To make croquetas de pollo, the bechamel and chicken mixture must be chilled so that it becomes easier to handle.
Croquetas de Pollo are also popular in former colonies of Spain like Cuba and the Dominican Republic where the croquetas de pollo are identical except for the addition of a few spices.
Origin & Cultural Significance
Croquettes originate from France though the original filling was reportedly not chicken. Its popularity spread to other countries where they were made with whatever fillings were preferred. Another type of croquette popular in Spain is croqueta de jamon or ham croquettes which is made using a type of ham produced only on Spain.
Croquettes are popular as tapas when sold in restaurants and a staple of Spanish households.
Spanish Croqueta de Pollo Recipe
Croquettes originate from France though the original filling was reportedly not chicken. Its popularity spread to other countries where they were made with whatever fillings were preferred.
- Butter, salted – 3 tbsp
- All-purpose flour – 3 tbsp
- Whole milk – 2 ¼ cups
- Chicken breast - 1
- Onion, chopped - 1
- Olive oil – 3 tbsp
- Eggs, whole - 2
- Bread crumbs – 1 cup
- Salt and pepper -to taste
- Nutmeg - ½ tsp
- Neutral oil for frying
- Pour the olive oil to a frying pan. Once it starts sizzling, add the chopped onion and cook over medium heat until it is transparent.
- Cut the chicken breast into small cubes and add to the pa for 10 minutes until the breast is cooked.
- Season with a little salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Set them aside
- In a saucepan, add the milk and bring to a boil. When it’s ready remove the milk from the heat and set aside.
- In the same pan from the chicken breast, melt the butter.
- Once melted, add the flour and mix for 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly to avoid lumps.
- Add the milk which was set aside, and don’t stop stirring until the béchamel sauce begins to thicken. For a thicker sauce, cook for another minute or so.
- Add the cubed chicken with the onions to the bechamel sauce and mix well.
- Put the mix on a plate and cover it with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from forming.
- Place in the fridge for 45 minutes so that the mix chills.
- Meanwhile, whisk the eggs and place in a bowl.
- On a plate, add the breadcrumbs.
- Once the mixture is cold, with the help of two spoons, shape the croquettes into short logs.
- Dip each croquette into the eggs, then roll into the breadcrumbs, covering it evenly.
- Fry in oil immediately. Since the chicken is already cooked, this should not take long. The croquettes can also be placed in the fridge for about an hour for easier frying.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 337Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 103mgSodium: 305mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 7gProtein: 14g