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Bean and Mushroom Croquettes
These bean-based croquettes are similar to acaraje, a common snack in Brazil. Any bean will work — as will canned beans; if using, just skip the soaking. If available, sprinkle chopped fresh herbs over the croquettes after cooking. Serve hot with your favorite dip, such as hot sauce, chimichurri, or aioli.
1 pound dried beans (can be any bean)
2 quarts water
1 medium onion, diced
8 ounces mushrooms, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ teaspoon ground cumin or coriander
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup all-purpose flour, more if needed
1 cup bread crumbs, more if needed
2 cups vegetable oil
Soak the beans in the water overnight. The next day, strain the beans and, in a stockpot, cover the beans with clean water. Cook until soft.
In a skillet over high heat, sweat the onions in oil. Reduce to medium heat and add the mushrooms and garlic. Season with salt, black pepper, and cumin. Cook until soft, then set aside.
Once the beans are soft, strain them, reserving 1 cup of the broth. With a food processor, potato masher, or a wooden spoon, work the beans until they form a puree. If needed, add a little bit of the broth.
Add the onions and mushrooms and mix well until incorporated. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Add 1 egg and combine. The mixture should be a little sticky, enough to hold its shape when rolled (if it’s still too dry, add more broth).
Roll into little croquettes, around 2 ounces each. Set in the fridge.
Arrange the flour, a beaten egg with 1 teaspoon of water, and the bread crumbs in separate bowls. Roll the croquettes in flour, then the egg, and finally the bread crumbs. Set them aside.
Heat the vegetable oil in a deep pot over medium-high heat until it reaches 350°F. Fry the croquettes until golden brown.
— Paula Alencar