DEVILED CRAB CROQUETTES

INGREDIENTS

  • Croquette Dough
  • 3 loaves stale white bread, crusts removed
  • 1 loaf stale Cuban bread, ground very fine and sifted
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Crabmeat Filling
  • 5 tablespoons Vigo Olive Oil
  • 3 onions, finely chopped
  • 1/2 red or green bell pepper, finely chopped (Italian style)
  • 4 cloves garlic, mashed or chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 can (6 ounce size) tomato paste
  • 1 pound fresh claw crabmeat, shell and cartilage removed, shredded
  • Croquettes
  • 2 eggs, well beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 1 cup Vigo Italian Style Seasoned Bread Crumbs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • Vegetable oil for deep frying

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Croquette Dough: About 4 hours before serving, make dough. Break white bread into pieces, place in a large bowl, cover with water and soak for 15 minutes. (I used about 2 cups of water. I poured 1 cup of water over the bread and then mixed it before adding another cup of water. I also let it sit for about 30 minutes, not 15, and got very little excess water this way) Drain water and squeeze soaked bread until almost dry and return to bowl. Gradually add sifted Cuban bread until mixture reaches dough consistency. Add paprika and salt, mix thoroughly. Form dough into ball and refrigerate 2 hours.
  2. Make filling: Heat olive oil in large skillet. Add onion, bell pepper, garlic and hot red pepper, and saute very slowly 15 minutes. Add bay leaves, sugar, salt, water and tomato paste and stir. Cook uncovered 20 minutes or until all of the water has evaporated. See picture above, you should be able to drag a spoon thru and no moisture remains. Stir in crab, and heat a few minutes. Remove bay leaves. Place mixture on platter, and refrigerate 2 hours.
  3. To assemble: After dough and filling have chilled, make croquettes. With your hands, take about three tablespoons of bread dough, press, add one tablespoon of crab filling and seal dough around filling like a croquette with pointed ends.
  4. In a small bowl, mix eggs, milk, salt and pepper. In another bowl, mix Vigo Italian Style Seasoned Bread Crumbs and flour. Roll croquettes first into breadcrumb mixture then into egg mixture then into breadcrumb mixture again. Refrigerate 2 hours.
  5. When ready to cook, heat oil in a deep heavy saucepan or a deep fryer to 350 degrees. Place croquettes a few at a time in the hot oil, and fry until light brown
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