La Chatte Gitane (or The Gypsy Cat) was the name we chose for our cottage in France. We chose it while on the road, moving home, from Ireland to France with 2 dogs and 7 cats in the car.
This blog began its insignificant life as a recipe book for friends and family who would ask me repeatedly for a recipe of this, that and the other.
Since then it has taken many different directions, like gypsies tend to do. Sometimes making a U-turn and revisiting familiar roads and taking a break when necessary.
You'll find recipes here, but also musings about the places we've called home, the gardens that we've established, not always successfully, the homes we've improved and the environments we've lived in. Currently, that is back in Ireland.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Cheese Croquettes

Scuse the photo quality :-/

Would you believe I have never made these before and Belgium is undoubtedly the land of croquettes. Potato, cheese, brown shrimp, ham.
Only once did I make potato croquettes and that was eons ago, but last summer I got very excited about beetroot croquettes that I saw here , I had a go and they were the bees knees. YumYum.
But now I was stuck with loads of cheese - camembert style and goats cheese - from christmas.  Couldn't stand the smell anymore and I didn't feel like eating cheese morning, noon and night, so what better way to use all the cheese than in croquetes.  I made 60 of the little blighters, they freeze well and are gorgeous.

Ingredients (for 15 to 20 croquettes)
  • 100 grs butter
  • 150 grs flour
  • 500 ml milk
  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • 250 gr cheese (if using Camembert, remove the white skin as it doesn't melt)
  • 4 eggs
  • extra flour for coating
  • breadcrumbs
  • Salt, black pepper, nutmeg
  • Make a thick bechamel sauce with the butter, flour and milk. Stirring all the while.
  • Add the mustard
  • Separate the eggs, add the yolks to the sauce and let it come to the boil again, stirring. Keep the whites for coating the croquettes afterwards.
  • Add the cheese but don't let it come to boiling point anymore. If using hard cheeses, they need to be grated before you add them.  Stir until the cheese has melted into the sauce.
  • Season with salt, freshly ground black pepper and freshly grated nutmeg.
  • Tip the sauce onto a floured tray and spread out eavenly.
  • Store away in the fridge for a couple of hours
  • Cut the paste into 4x4 cm squares.
  • First coat them in flour, then into the beaten egg whites, and lastly cover with breadcrumbs.
  • Put them on a clean tray next to each other.
  • Another cooling off period will benefit the end result. I did put them straight into the freezer.
  • Heat up about a cm of sunflower oil into a deep-ish pan. Or you can use a deep fat fryer - 170°C
  • Fry the croquettes in batches (depending on how many you have)until they are golden brown on both sides (you might have to turn them over halfway through the cooking proces, obviously)
  • When they are done, scoop them out of the oil and drain on kitchen paper. 
  • Ready to be served with salad, dipping sauce of your choosing.

It is not my favourite dish to make, but let me tell you they were worth the effort.

Patricia xxx...x



  1. It is a lot of work but home made cheese croquettes are the best!

  2. Were they worth it? Yes, yes and thrice yes! :) I am really envious, I've never had the knack . . . mine always end up to runny, more like cheesy mashed potato. But as you say, cheese and potato is a winning combination! :)

  3. Myriam, yes,they are the best, like most things homemade, but indeed a lot of fiddly work. :)

    Rachel - Marmaduke Scarlet,
    These croquettes do not have potatoes in them. They are made with a really thick bechamel sauce.:)

  4. Ah my mistake! Having said that, when I have tried to make Spanish cheese and ham croquettes I never seem to have the knack . . . I think my bechemel is just too runny. You clearly have the touch!

  5. yum. I would LOVE these!


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