Soft creamy potato with ground meat inside a tasty crunchy shell, Korokke (Japanese Potato and Meat Croquettes) is my favorite Japanese food and this is my mother’s recipe.
Before I share my recipe today, I want to apologize for my delayed response with emails and comments lately. I’m usually pretty good at responding to readers’ recipe-related questions in less than 24 hours, but recently I’ve been struggling to find the time. Finally my husband came back from his week-long business trip (thank God!) and my son’s school performance is now over. I have one more week left before my up-coming Japan trip. I’ll be working to catch up on emails and comments this week, and I thank you for your patience.
Now let’s talk about food! When my mom was visiting during last Christmas & New Year, I asked her to make one of my most favorite food that she cooks. I mentioned in my blog a couple of times before but it’s Korokke (Japanese Croquette).
Well, I really wished that I had better pictures of her delicious Korokke, but we were making these during a dark winter afternoon, the quality of step-by-step photos and final shots are not as good as I wanted them to be due to lack of natural light. They are the best Korokke ever, but I guess you will have to take me for my words. 😉
My mom usually makes an extra effort to get the best ingredients when she cooks and she is really good at deep frying any food even without using a thermometer to measure the oil temperature. I think it’s really her magic touch or maybe just years of experience, but I could never replicate her taste even when I use the same ingredients. The recipe is actually very simple and there is no secret hidden ingredient. However, the key for successful Korokke is high-quality ingredients and the cooking technique. Hopefully one day I get better at making these.
I’m going to Japan to visit my family one week from now so I will have another chance to eat these again. I always request my mom to make this dish every time I went home for the past 15 years. I grew up eating these for the first 20 years of my life and since then, I get to eat at least once a year when I go back home or when she visits me. It became a sort of a tradition. Dear readers, do you have food that you always eat when you visit your home?
When we have leftover, we usually make Korokke Sandwich the next day. Add shredded cabbage, put some Japanese mayonnaise and Tonkatsu sauce and sandwich the Korokke with two pieces of bread. Honestly, I never get tired of my mom’s Korokke, and my dad and I always brighten up when we hear she was making Korokke for dinner.
Don’t Like Deep Frying? Try Baked Croquette!
Japanese baked croquette piping hot mashed potato mixed with juicy meat wrapped around a crispy panko shell, no deep frying required!
Japanese Ingredient Substitution: If you want to look for substitutes for Japanese condiments and ingredients, click here.
Soft creamy potato with ground meat inside a tasty crunchy shell, Korokke (Japanese Potato and Meat Croquettes) is my favorite Japanese food and this is my mother's recipe.
- 2 lb russet potatoes (900 g = about 4 potatoes) (peeled and halved)
- ½ tsp kosher/sea salt (I use Diamond Crystal; Use half for table salt) (for potatoes)
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 Tbsp neutral-flavored oil (vegetable, canola, etc)
- 1 onion
- 1 lb ground beef (454 g)
- ½ tsp kosher/sea salt (I use Diamond Crystal; Use half for table salt) (for meat) (¼ tsp table salt)
- 3 large eggs
- 2 ½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) (125 g)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour (plain flour) (60 g)
- neutral-flavored oil (vegetable, canola, etc) (for deep frying)
- Tonkatsu Sauce (See Notes for homemade recipe)
- In a large pot, put water and potatoes and bring it to a boil. Cook potatoes until a skewer goes through the potato easily.
- Remove the potato from the heat and drain the water completely. When you do so, use a lid to partially cover so the potatoes don’t fall out from the pot.
- Move the pot back to the stove. On low heat shift the pot so that remaining moisture will completely evaporate (but don’t burn the potatoes).
Transfer the potatoes into a large bowl and mash the potatoes while they are still hot. Add salt, pepper, and butter.
While cooking the potatoes, chop the onion finely.
In a large skillet, heat oil on medium-high heat. Sauté onion until tender.
Add the meat and break it up with a wooden spoon. When the meat is cooked, add salt and black pepper. Turn off the heat.
Before adding the meat into the mashed potatoes in the bowl, get rid of the juice from the meat. Do not combine the cooking liquid with the mashed potatoes.
Set aside to let cool a bit and let the moisture evaporate.
While the mixture is still warm, but not hot, start making Korokke patties (mom made little one for the kids). Let the Korokke patties rest in the fridge for 15-30 minutes. TIP: Resting and cooling down the patties prevents the korokke from exploding while deep frying. The cold patties in the hot oil will not release any steam; therefore korokke will not explode in the oil. It also helps the ingredients to meld together.
Dredge each ball in flour, egg, and Panko. Put the Korokke back in the fridge till oil is ready for frying (same reason above).
- In a wok, heat oil over medium high heat. Deep fry Korokke until they are golden brown (How To Deep Fry Food). Inside is already cooked, so all you need to do is to make it nice brown color.
- Transfer Korokke to paper towels and let the oil absorbed in the paper. Serve immediately with Tonkatsu Sauce.
- You can store the leftover in an airtight container and freeze up to a month. To reheat, put frozen or half defrosted korokke on baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper and bake at 350 ºF (180 ºC) for 15 minutes or until inside is warm.
Tonkatsu Sauce: Homemade recipe, click here.
Recipe by Namiko Chen of Just One Cookbook. All images and content on this site are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission. If you’d like to share this recipe on your site, please re-write the recipe in your own words and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.