Secondi Piatti: Meat, Fish, Eggs, Cheese Starters

Fried Sweet Potato Balls Pecorino-Thyme Flavoured

Fried sweet potato balls with Pecorino Romano cheese and thyme, they work because we handle sweet potatoes as if they were as pumpkins: they both pair perfectly with tasty flavours, something that here Pecorino Romano, thyme and other aromas enhance without overpowering them.
There is no need to cook before sweet potatoes for this recipe, grating them raw then adding to the mixture is more than enough.


Ingredients for about 20 potato balls, Preparation 15 mins, Cooking time 20-25 mins

  • 400 g sweet potatoes
  • 60 g grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme – or a spoonful of dried thyme
  • 1 Egg
  • a pinch of nutmeg, salt and ground black pepper
  • Breadcrumbs, to taste
  • Peanut oil for deep-frying, 1 litre

Method

Peel potatoes, then grate them raw collecting the pulp in a bowl. Add only the egg yolk – the egg white will be used at the end to bread – grated Pecorino cheese, thyme leaves or a spoon with dried thyme, a pinch of salt, nutmeg, black pepper and stir.

Tip: you will probably notice that grated sweet potatoes tend to release a little water, so if the mixture just obtained is too soft add more grated cheese or breadcrumbs. If it is too dry, add a drop of milk.

Compacting the mixture and start to form balls of not too large a size.

Beat the egg white previously set aside. In another plate put the breadcrumbs and pass each potato ball in the beaten egg white, then in the breadcrumbs.

Heat the oil, to check if it is ready do the stick test, if oil creates small bubbles around the stick, oil is ready for frying. You can also add a pinch of breadcrumbs and if it fries, it’s ready.

Tip: For perfect frying, the oil should not be too little, but should instead completely cover what you are frying.
The oil must reach at least 180° /190°C , suitable temperature for deep-frying.

The ideal oil for frying is the Peanut Oil since it has a smoke point of 180°C, but also olive oil and Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Otherwise the temperature of the oil will lower and the fried will inevitably absorb the oil. A few pieces at a time, as you drain on absorbent paper, put the others.

Fry max 4 balls at a time for about 2-3 mins and possibly over a medium-low flame.

As soon as sweet potato balls are ready, place them on a plate lined with absorbent kitchen paper, add a pinch of salt and serve.

Tip: do not cover the veggie balls with another plate or lid or other kitchen absorbent paper, otherwise the heat will create moisture and the crispiness you got will become soggy.

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