Croquetas de Jamon

These are a great tapas that are served all over Madrid. It’s a great way to use up the end pieces of jamon, and also another way to enjoy the flavor of this great ham. As always, be careful when working with hot oil.

4 oz jamón serrano, diced fine (end pieces are good here)
1 cup milk
1 clove garlic, whole
1 bay leaf
3 Tbsp butter
5 Tbsp flour
1 pinch nutmeg
1 clove
salt, as needed

1 cup flour
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups bread crumbs

2 qts canola or pure olive oil
salt, as needed


Bring the milk, garlic bay leaf to a boil. Remover from the heat, add the clove and steep for 30 minutes. In a saute pan, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and cook for a minute, constantly stirring – you should not get any color on this. Gradually whisk in the milk. Cook and stir until thick. Season with salt and nutmeg. Stir in the jamon and let cool.

Set up three bowls, one with flour, one with eggs, and one with breadcrumbs. Shape the bechamel into small balls about the size of a golf ball. Roll them in flour, shake off the excess and then put them in the egg mixture. toss it around to until the ball is completely covered in egg. Finally, remove the ball from the egg and place it in the bread crumb mixture. Place in the refrigerator or freezer immediately. Repeat until all the croqueta mixture is gone.

In a large pot, heat the oil to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Us a large pot so that the oil fills it half way. Place a few of the croquetas in the pot and continue to fry until they are golden brown. Remove from the oil using a strainer or slotted spoon carefully and place on paper towels. season with a little salt, let cool for a minute and enjoy!

Croquetas de Jamon

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