- 50 g butter, diced
- ½ onion, finely diced
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 50 g plain flour
- 250 ml (1 cup) milk
- 100 ml vegetable, or chicken stock
- salt and pepper
- freshly grated nutmeg
- 3 sheets gold strength gelatine (see Note)
- 175 g aged Dutch cheese (strong flavour and salty), grated
- 50 ml cream
- 1 egg yolk
- ¼ cup plain flour for coating
- 3 eggs, whisked for coating
- 100 g dried breadcrumbs, such as panko for coating
- vegetable oil for deep frying
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
The following recipe has been tested and edited by SBS Food and may differ slightly from the podcast.
Chilling time 3 hours
Place butter into a small saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and bay leaf, cook gently until onion is translucent. Add flour and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Add the milk and vegetable stock a little at the time, stirring constantly, until smooth and thickened. If there are any lumps, whisk until smooth. Season to taste with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
Soak the gelatine in cold water for a couple of minutes until softened. Add the cheese and cream to the sauce, remove the pan from the heat, squeeze out excess water from the gelatine and add to the white sauce. Cool for 5 minutes, or until about 65˚C, then add egg yolk.
Spread the paste over a clean tray and leave to cool and stiffen up. Cover tightly and place in a refrigerator for at least 2 hours until chilled.
Use a piping bag with a large plain nozzle (about 13 mm) and pipe long strips (about 30 cm) onto a baking paper lined oven tray and cut into 4 cm pieces. Place flour, whisked eggs and breadcrumbs in separate bowls. Roll a few at a time in flour, then egg wash, then crumbs. Double coat by placing back into the egg then crumbs. Place on a baking paper-lined tray, return to the refrigerator for an hour to chill.
Heat the oil to 195˚C. Fry no more than four at a time for 1 minute, stirring occasionally with a slotted spoon, or until just golden. Be careful of the hot oil and not to cook too long, or they will split.
• Gold strength gelatine is available at selected specialty food shops. If unavailable, use 1½ titanium strength gelatine sheets.
Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Michelle Noerianto. Food preparation by Nick Banbury.