Vegetarian Korokke & Simple Salad with Japanese Carrot Ginger Sesame Miso dressing!

Korokke are Japanese croquettes aka cripsy morsels of yum that are way more satisfying than a boring old chicken strip. Although those have a place in my heart as well – especially with a good honey mustard dip!

This meal is great when you are trying to keep your food budget in check! But you also want to eat something totally tasty and relatively healthy to boot. Yeah these little croquettes are pan fried, but they are fried in olive oil (at least in my house) and there are a ton of veggies to make you happy.

For the croquettes themselves I researched a few recipes and just kind of winged it. Lots of the recipes call for meat but I wanted to try this simple corn and potato version. I added mozzarella because I just love Ramen with cheese (they do that in some Ramen shops) as well as Japanese Curry with cheese (Alpha Sushi in Vancouver has a lunch-only curry and it is crazy good). I have also had a fancy kabocha croquette that had mozzarella in it that was delightful at another of my favorite local Vancouver Japanese establishments. Alpha also does an Italian Spring Roll (which I have taught myself to make along with a sauce I created to go with it – stay tuned for that!). So anyway I had cheese on the mind so I went with it!

The salad dressing and Tonkatsu sauce I got from one of my favorite blogs Just One Cookbook

I visit this site regularly for all my Japanese foodie needs. I adjusted the salad dressing a bit, but I will mark (*) to show you what I did. I am sure the original is perfect. I love everything I have ever tried on her site. I just adjusted mainly because I think I overpoured the vinegar and because I just love sesame seeds and miso so much!

Anyway to the recipe!

Mashed Potatoes:

  • 4 Russets peeled and boiled til tender
  • 2-3 tablespoons butter
  • 3-5 scallions diced
  • 1 cob of fresh corn boiled, cooled and nibs sliced off with a knife
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella (but you could add more if you like it cheesey, or leave out if you prefer)
  • white pepper to taste
  • salt to taste

Add accoutrements to the cooked and drained potatoes. Don’t over mash. Just until it’s not lumpy and all ingredients are combined. Put in a bowl in the fridge or freezer to cool off. The mix will be easier to handle if its cold.

Korokke coating:

  • Semolina or flour in a bowl
  • 1-2 eggs whisked in a bowl (I added some some Tograshi for fun)
  • Panko crumbs

Once you have cold mash. Form into patties. Dip into flour then egg then panko til covered. It’s pretty messy but you have to use your hands for this. The patties are too delicated to use tongs or any other utensil. So I rinsed my hands off after forming each patty so the bowls didn’t become a clusterfrak).

If you want to make your life even easier. Put all the formed patties on a plate and refridgerate again until you are ready to fry them.

I Believe I Can Fry:

Heat up at 1/2 – 1 inch of oil to medium high. Wait til hot. Add in 4 patties and leave them alone til you can tell they are getting browned on the A side. You will want to use use two – yes that’s right – 2 pan flippers as they are very delicate. Once confident they are browning then nudge them a little. If they move easily they are ready to flip. I was totally impatient and a few of them turned out pretty ugly. I was hungry dagnabbit! But be patient and you can have pretty patties! Then cook on the flip side til also golden brown. I was also impatient and threw the first partially cooked batch in the oven on a cookie sheet to get darker while the second batch cooked. This further made them look kind of funny but they still tasted awesome. Mama tricks to get dinner done on time!

Tonkatsu Sauce: (please note that Worcestershire and of course Oyster sauce both contain non-veg ingredients. If you are a strict veggie you can try the recipe in this link! I haven’t tried it so if you do let me know how you liked it or if you have a better recommendation for a veggie version Vegan Tonkatsu Recipe)

Follow this recipe verbatim it’s so good. Unless you can buy a bottle in your local Asian market or you have a bottle of Okonomiyaki sauce that could be a decent sub. I didn’t feel like shopping and I also have way too many sauces and condiments to use up in my fridge as it is. So this was a great way to rid myself of some Worcestershire sauce which is rarely used.

Simple Salad:

  • Fresh washed greens ( I used Zen by Earthbound – and I always wash again even the pre-washed clamshells – I am just super picky about my salad greens!)
  • Avocado
  • Cucumber (I didn’t have any on hand but this would be a nice addition)
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds for garnish

Carrot Ginger Sesame Miso Dressing:

So I basically followed the lovely recipe in the link but made a few slight alterations* you can check the link to compare to the original. Eventually I will develop my own definitively – but this is only my second attempt. These things take time.

  • 1 carrot diced
  • 1 shallot diced*
  • 1.5 inches nub of ginger peeled and chopped*
  • ¼ cup rice vinegar (I eye balled this and may have put too much in accidentally – so I adjusted some other ingredients to balance it out)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil*
  • 2* Tbsp. brown sugar* (I would prefer honey but ran out)
  • 1 tablespoon* chickpea* miso (LOVE this one Feeding Change)
  • 1 1/2 tsp*. sesame oil
  • Salt to taste
  • White* pepper to taste
  • 1-2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds* (not in original)

Put everything in a blender and pulse til it’s as smooth as possible. I use a hand blender in a tall container which works as well.

Assemble:

Cook your croquettes and excess drain oil on paper towel. Serve on a plate with salad. Drizzle Tonkatsu sauce all over and some extra on the side. I found I used a lot it was so good.

I was trying to get dinner on the table so I forgot to take more pictures but here is what I got.

Enjoy!

Mashed potatoes with butter, scallions, fresh corn and mozzarella happy as potatoes can be.

Mashed potatoes with butter, scallions, fresh corn and mozzarella happy as potatoes can be.

Semolina, egg and panko crusted patties. Cute lil things!

Semolina, egg and panko crusted patties. Cute lil things!

Frying up the patties in olive oil!

Frying up the patties in olive oil!

A simple greens and avocado salad adorned with fresh carrot ginger miso sesame dressing and a generous sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds.

A simple greens and avocado salad adorned with fresh carrot ginger miso sesame dressing and a generous sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds.

2 thoughts on “Vegetarian Korokke & Simple Salad with Japanese Carrot Ginger Sesame Miso dressing!

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