Pumpkin and Grana Padano Croquettes with Balsamic Dip
Chef Francesco Mazzei
1 pumpkin (0.5kg) 50g Grana Padano 2 egg yolks 2 whole eggs 8 sage leaves, chopped 40g butter (melted) 60g bread crumbs Pinch of nutmeg 15g 00 flour Salt and pepper, to taste For the balsamic dip: 100ml balsamic vinegar 50ml very cold extra virgin olive oil Salt and pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 185°C. Cut the pumpkin in half and deseed. Score the flesh and sprinkle over the salt, pepper and sage to season.
Wrap the pumpkin loosely in grease-proof paper and then foil and bake in the oven for 30-45minutes until soft. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Once cool, scoop the pumpkin out of shell and roughly chop with a sharp knife.
Put the pulp into a tea towel or muslin cloth and squeeze to remove the excess water. Ideally, leave the pumpkin to drain into the muslin overnight in the fridge.
Mix together the pumpkin, grated Grana Padano, egg yolks, nutmeg, butter, salt and pepper . Put the mix into a piping bag with a 1 inch nozzle and pipe one long strip, cutting into 5cm sections Dust the surface of the strips with 00 flour.
Beat the whole eggs in a mixing bowl, and dip the croquettes in the egg mix to coat, before immediately coating with bread crumbs. Deep fry the croquettes in a wok of olive oil heated to 190°C for 5-7 minutes until nice and brown – make sure the oil is hot before you add the croquettes, and fry just a few at once so the oil doesn’t cool. Before you remove the croquettes, add 4 sage leaves to the wok and fry for a few seconds.
Remove the croquettes with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. For the balsamic dip: Mix all the ingredients together with a whisk.
Serve in a hot dish with a sprinkle of rock salt, and with an aged balsamic dip.