White bean croquettes with herby mayonnaise

White bean croquettes with herby mayonnaise

The Sunday Night Book
Patricia Niven

A few stints of living in the south of Spain have made me a big croquette aficionado. I particularly like this type for home cooking because it doesn’t involve making a bechamel sauce, and so is relatively simple and very tasty. All in all, a good robust option for a Sunday night.


Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, finely sliced
1 small sprig rosemary, leaves stripped and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
120g baby spinach leaves
400 g tin cannellini beans, drained
100g panko or other breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon finely chopped mint
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
generous pinch chilli flakes
75g mayonnaise
1 egg
6 tablespoons light olive oil


  1. Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a saucepan over a low heat and add the onion and rosemary. Cook very gently until soft and sweet, then add the garlic and stir about for a minute. Add the spinach and mix thoroughly, stirring until it wilts down. Once completely wilted and soft, add the beans and warm through.
  2. Transfer the contents of the pan to a food processor and whizz to a smooth paste. Add 20 g breadcrumbs and pulse to combine. The mixture should be quite stiff – if it seems too wet, add some more breadcrumbs. Scrape into a bowl and transfer to the fridge for an hour or so. Meanwhile, stir the mint, parsley and chilli flakes into the mayonnaise.
  3. Crack the egg into a shallow bowl and beat lightly. Put the breadcrumbs into another shallow bowl. Scoop out tablespoonfuls of the chilled croquette mixture, roll into balls and then flatten into little pucks. Dip the croquettes in beaten egg and then breadcrumbs, shaking off any excess. If I have time, I like to double-dip the croquettes to give them an extra-crispy shell.
  4. Heat the light olive oil in a small frying pan and, when the oil is good and hot, fry the croquettes in batches of three so you don’t lower the temperature of the oil too much. Keep turning them until they are golden all over, then drain on kitchen paper. Eat while hot, dipped in, or drizzled with, the herby mayo.
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