Monday, February 23, 2009

Potato Croquettes (Page 569)


  • Date: Friday, February 6, 2009 -- 7pm
  • Location: Bloomington, IN
  • Kitchen: My Apartment
  • Dining Companions: Matty, Teri, Terry, Karen H, and Dave
  • Recipe Rating: A-

This recipe was part of the meal I made when my parents and future in-laws came to visit a couple weeks ago. This recipe was essentially mashed potatoes mixed with cream puff dough, then piped out of a pastry bag and deep fried. Yes, it sounds like a strange thing to do, but what you end up with are the lightest, most delicious french fries you've ever had! To make these I started by roasting, then peeling and ricing some potatoes. Then I made a typical pate a choux (aka cream puff dough) from butter, salt, nutmeg, water, flour, and eggs. I added the potatoes to the finished dough and beat it all together. I made this mixture a day ahead, so that on the day of the dinner I simply had to pipe it directly into the hot oil. Once the croquettes had browned and cooked through I removed them from the oil and sprinkled them with salt. In summary: yum! these were really good. They had a nice potato flavor to them, but were wonderfully light at the same time. The exterior had a great crunch, which was an awesome contrast to the smooth and light interior. In my picture they don't look so cute because in my rush to get dinner on the table I photographed some of the less photogenic ones. But most of them were reasonably good looking, and had I been more careful while piping it would have been easy to make them consistently attractive. I was just too distracted by all the visitors to do that! This version of the classic French dish Pommes Dauphine is definitely worth a try!

Here is the recipe.

Generally speaking, I have been feeling pretty balanced about this whole wedding planning thing. One of the reasons my special gentleman and I decided to have a super small wedding was so that it wouldn't be a huge pain to plan (the other big reason was so that we can spend a lot of time with everyone who is coming!). Our wedding doesn't have a theme. Or a color scheme. There is not going to be a professional florist involved. Or a professional photographer. As weddings go, it will be pretty low key (except for the five-course meal part of it -- I guess that's not so low key!). I was feeling pretty good about all this, and pretty on top of things. Then, a few days ago, I got an email from one of my good friends. She is also engaged and also getting married this summer. The email contained a link to her wedding website, and it was BEAUTIFUL. It contained tons of information, lots of fun stories and pictures. It even had wedding related games on it that you could play. It had a guestbook where lots of people had posted their happy wishes for the couple. It was the nicest wedding website I have ever seen. After spending 15 minutes going through it, I turned to my special gentleman and said, "We don't even have a wedding website!" He gave me this look as though I had said something crazy. No, actually he gave me a look as if he didn't even understand the words I had said! He's right -- we don't need a wedding website. We are inviting so few people that we talk frequently to everyone who's coming. Any information they need they can just ask us for. But in that moment I certainly understood how easy it is to get wrapped up in the whole wedding planning thing. When I had that, "We need to have a wedding website -- everyone has a wedding website!" reaction, it suddenly became clear to me how it is that people end up spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on their wedding. A website though, of course, is free -- and if I were less lazy about my wedding planning, I might make one. But chances are, I won't. Instead I will enjoy my friend's lovely website, and try to stay calm planning a small, intimate wedding for me and my special gentleman!


Liz C said...

So true! I can see where it would be really hard to stay the course, so to speak. I may be facing the same thing in a year or so -- I'll have to come back and read this post to keep be centered.

Teena said...

Oh yeah? You may be planning a wedding soon? That's exciting! I am definitely making an effort to stay focused on the things that are important (gathering with people we love and eating good food!) and not letting myself get caught up in the crazy wedding industry!