All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Kani kuriimu korokke / crab cream croquettes

The creamy filling melts in your mouth. Simple, creamy croquettes to take full advantage of the crab's flavor. Adding mashed potato makes it a bit more substantial.


(6 croquettes)

100 g crabmeat
1 medium (130-150 g) potato
Tiny handful parsley
Salt & pepper, to taste (not in photo)

For thick bechamel sauce
1 tbsp (approx. 15 g) butter
1 1/2 tbsp (15 g) flour
150cc milk or tonyu soy milk

For coating/breading
4 tbsp flour
1 egg
3-4 tbsp water (not in photo)
50-70 g (200-300 cc) panko breadcrumbs

Oil (for deep-frying, not in photo)


Finely chop parsley.
Slice potato into 1-2 cm thick pieces.


Microwave potato in plastic wrap for 2-3 minutes until soft, transfer to a bowl, and mash while hot.


Prepare bechamel sauce.
In a small frying pan or shallow pan, melt butter.

Meanwhile, add flour to milk, and whisk well.

When butter melts, pour the milk-flour mixture, and stir constantly on medium low or low heat until as thick as pancake batter.


Remove bechamel sauce from heat, add potato, mix well, salt and pepper to taste, and mix again.

Add parsley and crabmeat, and mix well.
Transfer to a shallow container or baking sheet, smooth surface, cover with plastic wrap to prevent surface from becoming dry, and refrigerate until cool and somewhat firm.


Cut into six, and form patties.

These patties are very soft and can be either round or flattish; the important point is that they be kept separated. Keep them in the fridge until ready to deep-fry.

When ready to deep-fry, first get ready all ingredients for breading, and heat oil to 375-385 F (190-195 C).

In the meantime,  beat egg, add flour and water, and mix well. Position a tray of egg mixture and a tray of panko side by side.

Dip each patty in egg mixture, then coat with panko.


When oil is hot enough (a panko breadcrumb put in oil stays on surface, immediately emits fine bubbles and becomes golden; very fine bubbles come up from the tips of bamboo chopsticks), coat each patty with panko once again, gently press it down, and gently put in oil.

When bottom starts to turn golden, flip, and continue cooking until desired color is achieved.   

When ready to remove, raise temperature somewhat, lift each patty while keeping one end still immersed in oil to draw back oil to pot, then remove from oil, and place on paper-towel-lined plate.

Serve hot.

  • Leftover mashed potato or baked potato can be used. If using mashed potato, reduce the amount of milk for the bechamel sauce, depending on the moisture content of mashed potato. If using cold baked potato, heat it up first so that it is easy to mash.
  • Filling can be prepared a day ahead and kept refrigerated.
  • If potato is not added, make the bechamel sauce even thicker, almost to cookie dough consistency when chilled, by doubling the amount of flour (3 tbsp/30 g in total) and adding some milk (200 cc in total).
  • Because of the high moisture content of the filling, cream croquettes tend to burst while cooking. Using a thick egg-flour mixture as the primary coating (instead of coating with flour then with egg) is very helpful, as it provides a relatively firm shield when cooking at high temperature. Also watch for the color of croquettes to change.  Given the high temperature (higher than the temperature used for many other deep-fried dishes), they cook quite fast (within a few minutes), and a delay in flipping or removing them from oil could also cause them burst.
  • If less oil is used (oil does not cover croquettes), when the bottom side (outer edge) starts to lightly brown, tilt pot to cover the exposed top surface with oil (or spoon over hot oil) to start cooking the top.
  • Heat up leftovers in the oven. Microwaving would make the crust soggy.

(Last updated: February 2, 2014)

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