Vegetarian Croquettes


As a mom, I am always on the look-out for healthy delicious recipes for my child, and as she is still a toddler, finger foods seem to top the list. Last week, I came across these beautiful Carrot Croquettes on Patricia's blog [photo courtesy Technicolor Kitchen]. They were delicious to look at, and I knew these would appeal to my whole family. But as I was going through the ingredient list, I saw that it contained Apricots along with the carrots. Fruit and veggies, both together in one recipe?! I had to try it to know if this works, and I am so thrilled to say that it does work! I didn't have apricots, so I threw in some dried cranberries, and also added a bunch of chopped cilantro along with the parsley. The recipe also includes some almonds - fruits, veggies and nuts, plus its Baked - how much more nutritious can a recipe get!

This recipe is a wonderful change from the tried and tested Potato croquettes. It has a balanced nutritional value, and kids can eat these even while running around in the backyard! If you are looking for an ideal finger food for your kids, or a delicious appetizer for your pot-lucks, this one is for you!

Healthy Carrot Croquettes
Makes about 25 patties

5 medium carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
3/4 cup day-old white breadcrumbs + more for coating the croquettes
5 dried apricots, finely diced
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons flaked almonds
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/2 cup packed flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped
finely grated zest of 2 lemons
1 egg
salt and black pepper - to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil, for shallow-frying

Steam carrots in a steamer over a saucepan of boiling water until tender (20-25 minutes). Transfer to a bowl and mash them to make a smooth purée.

Now add the breadcrumbs, apricots, spring onions, almonds, garlic, parsley, lemon zest, egg, and season to taste by adding salt and pepper.

Mix it all together to form a soft dough, adding more breadcrumbs if dough is too sticky. Divide into 25 equal portions. Roll each portion between your palms to make a croquette or a patty, if you like.

Place all croquettes on a tray lined with baking paper and refrigerate until firm, about 1-2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Heat olive oil in a deep-sided frying pan over medium-high heat. Roll the croquettes in the breadcrumbs, then cook them in the olive oil, in batches, until golden on the outside. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes or until cooked through. This double-cooking method might sound like extra work, but believe me, it really works in developing a nice crisp outer texture for the croquettes.

Once done, serve these warm with your favorite sipping sauce on the side.

Related Recipes
Healthy Carrot Cookies
Paneer & Asparagus Lollipops
Cranberry & Cream Cheese Dip
Baked Sweet Potato Fries

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