Snapper and red pepper croquettes

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 6 people

  • 4 red capsicum
  • 700 ml milk
  • 4 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 golden shallots, coarsely chopped
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 6 white peppercorns
  • 300 gm snapper, bones and skin removed, cut into 5cm pieces
  • 100 gm butter, coarsely chopped
  • 100 gm (2/3 cup) plain flour
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • For deep-frying: vegetable oil
  • For dusting: seasoned plain flour
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 105 gm (1½ cups) fine, dried white breadcrumbs
01   Preheat oven to 260C. Place capsicum on a tray lined with baking paper and roast until skins blister (10-15 minutes). Place in a heatproof bowl, cover with plastic wrap and stand until skin loosens (10-15 minutes). Peel, remove seeds, then finely chop and set aside.
02   Combine milk, garlic, shallot, bay leaves and peppercorns in a small saucepan, bring to a simmer over medium heat, add snapper and simmer until snapper is just cooked through (5-7 minutes). Remove snapper with a slotted spoon, coarsely flake, set aside. Strain (discard solids), reserve 600ml liquid, keep warm.
03   Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, add flour and stir occasionally until combined (3 minutes). Stirring continuously, add reserved liquid in a thin steady stream until incorporated and smooth, then stir occasionally until flour is cooked (5 minutes). Add paprika, reserved snapper and capsicum, season to taste and refrigerate until firm (2-3 hours).
04   Heat oil in a deep-fryer or deep-sided saucepan to 180C. Place flour, egg and breadcrumbs in separate bowls. Form tablespoonfuls of snapper mixture into croquettes, dust with flour, dip in egg and roll in breadcrumbs, shaking off excess in between. Set aside on a tray and repeat with remaining mixture. Fry croquettes in batches until golden and cooked through (3-4 minutes; be careful, oil may spit). Drain on absorbent paper, season with sea salt flakes and serve.
This recipe is from the October 2009 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
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