Bolitas de Bacalao y Papa
Codfish and potato puffs
- Makes 25 to 50 puffs.
- 1 lb dried salt cod
- 4 medium all-purpose potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tbsp salted butter, softened
- salt to taste
- generous grindings of black pepper
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 tbsp minced fresh parsley
- 1 cup cracker meal or very fine bread crumbs
- peanut or vegetable oil for frying
- fresh lime juice to taste
- 1 drain the fish, place it in a small saucepan, cover with fresh water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce the heat to low, and simmer 5 minutes.
- Drain and cool the fish, remove any skin and bones, and flake.
- In a medium-size saucepan over medium-high heat, cover the potatoes and garlic with salted water, bring to a boil, and cook until tender, 20 to 25 minutes, then drain.
- Mash the potatoes, using a potato masher or fork, add the flaked fish, butter, salt, pepper, eggs, and parsley, and mix well.
- Refrigerate the mixture at least 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle a light layer of cracker meal on a work surface.
- Taking a generous tablespoonful of the codfish mixture in the palm of your hand, form it into a ball about 1½ inches in diameter, and roll it in the crumbs; repeat with all the codfish mixture, renewing the crumbs when necessary.
- Preheat the oven to 250°F.
- In a large, heavy-bottomed skillet or deep fryer over medium-high heat, heat 2 to 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees, or until a drop of batter sizzles when it touches the oil, and fry the puffs until golden brown on all sides, turning with a slotted spoon.
- Do not fry too many at once or the oil temperature will fall and they will be soggy rather than crisp.
- Place the puffs on a paper- towel-lined platter in the oven until all have been cooked, and serve hot, sprinkled with lime juice.