I often get asked for simple shortcuts & timesavers - so I have tried to come up with a few easy & delicious recipes using ingredients which most of us normally have on hand. After a few trials (& I admit - some errors), I finally had a winner in the way of canned chicken! Now mind you, I have never really used canned chicken before but my Spicy Chicken Croquettes were a really delicious & tasty surprise. For those of you who prefer to use regular shredded chicken breast for this recipe, go right ahead but the canned chicken is a wonderful shortcut & timesaver. If you are unfamiliar with canned chicken breast, it is basically pre-cooked and shredded chicken breast thats ready to use. I highly recommend you buy the white meat chicken packed in water for the best results.
I often serve these as appetizers, they are just perfect for entertaining and especially for those last minute unexpected dinner guests. These yummy chicken croquettes can either be fried or baked in an oven, either way these delicious treats are sure to please.
SPICY CHICKEN CROQUETTES:
1 can of cooked chicken breast (12.5 oz size) or use 1½ cups of cooked, finely shredded chicken breast
1 medium potato (boiled until fork tender & lightly mashed
1 medium onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1½ ginger, peeled & finely minced
2-3 small green Thai chilies, finely minced (to taste)
½ tsp turmeric (haldi)
½ tsp smoked Spanish paprika
½ tsp ground coriander powder
1 tsp ground cumin powder
1 tsp garam masala
¼ tsp red chili powder, to taste
salt & pepper, to taste
¼ cup cilantro leaves, finely minced
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2+ cups Japanese panko bread crumbs
oil (peanut, vegetable or canola) as needed
cooking spray if you are baking the croquettes
Drain the canned chicken well and then flake it gently using a fork. In a large mixing bowl, combine the chicken with as much mashed potato as needed to form a small oval shape or round ball. Now add the onion, garlic, ginger, green chilies and spices (turmeric, paprika, ground coriander powder, ground cumin powder, garam masala, red chili powder, salt and pepper). Also add in the cilantro leaves and egg. Now mix gently until the mixture just comes together, cover & refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours.
Now carefully form the mixture into log rolls, oval shapes or round balls, you should easily get 20-25+ croquettes. Then gently roll each croquette liberally in the panko breadcrumbs and set aside to either fry or bake.
*To Fry -
Heat a large deep pan (cast iron works great) with enough oil for frying - these can be shallow fried. When oil is hot, fry the croquettes until golden brown on all sides. These may need to be done in batches, do not overcrowd the pan. Drain well on absorbent paper towel and serve with your favorite chutneys and sauces.
Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange the croquettes in a single layer on a lightly oiled baking tray I used cooking spray here. Drizzle a little oil on each croquette to help with the browning process and bake on the center rack for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with your favorite chutneys and sauces.