This is a popular meze and snack during the 3 weeks of Carnival, right before the 48 days of Lent begin. The croquettes are soft, light, and easy to eat in quantity. The herbs help foil some of the pungency of the feta. These make an excellent accompaniment to a glass of red wine.
- Yield: 20
- 1 pound (450 g) boiling potatoes, peeled and quartered
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 egg
- ½ pound (225 g) Greek feta cheese, crumbled
- ⅓ cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- ⅓ cup finely chopped fresh mint
- Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- All-purpose flour, as needed
- Olive or other oil, for frying
- In a pot, cover the potatoes with cold salted water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer the potatoes until fork-tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain into a colander and set aside to cool completely.
- Transfer the potatoes to a bowl and mash with a fork or handheld potato masher. Mix in the egg, feta, herbs, nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Add flour if necessary to bind the mixture, kneading in 2 tablespoons at a time, until the mixture is solid enough to hold its shape.
- Shape the croquettes into 1½-inch (4 cm) oblong or round patties. Place on a plate, cover with parchment then foil, and refrigerate for 1 hour to firm up.
- Spread about 1 cup of flour into a plate.
- In a heavy nonstick skillet, heat 1 inch (2.5 cm) of oil over medium to high heat. Test to see if the oil is hot enough by tossing in a piece of bread. It should crisp up in about 10 seconds. When the oil is ready, start dredging the croquettes lightly in flour, shaking off any excess. Fry in batches in the hot oil, turning once with a slotted spoon, until golden. Remove and drain on paper towels. Repeat until the entire mixture is used up. Serve hot.