180 ml (¾cup)coconut oilor other temperature frying oil
220ml (1cup) plant based milk
salt and pepper
For the fried onions
2cups any preferred salad
½tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
For the vegan Bechamel sauce (1 night before)
Combine the plant based milk and the vegetable stock and warm up in a small pot (warm, Not boiling)
Heat the olive oil in another pot, and saute the finely chopped onion until softened. Add the finely chopped garlic and stir for 30 seconds.
Add the flour, while passing it through a sieve. Stir the flour well, so it doesn't burn. Keep on stirring until the flour goes very lightly brown.
Add a ladle full of the Milk & Stock mixture, and stir until well combined. Repeat this ladle per ladle until all the liquid is well combined and you reach a creamy bechamel texture without any lumps.
Season with a salt and pepper to your liking, and leave to cool down a bit.
Stir in the tarragon and lemon zest, and leave to cool down completely.
Cover the sauce with plastic wrap, and leave in the fridge overnight.
Smoky celeriac puree (can be pre-made and reheated)
Boil the chopped celeriac in water.
Meanwhile, warm up the plant based milk, and add the lapsang tea leaves. Leave to infuse for 15 - 20 minutes while keeping the milk warm (not boiling).
When the celeriac is cooked and well softened (check by pricking with a fork), drain and mash the celeriac with a little bit of olive oil and salt and pepper.
Sieve the milk, and add to the puree. Mix well.
If your puree has become to liquid, just heat it up and reduce to desired texture. If it is too thick, add some more milk.
Keep aside, until almost ready for plating.
Salad with fried onions
Wash your salad leaves, dry, and dress with just a little olive oil and salt and pepper.
Heat the frying oil in a pan on medium heat and add the thinly sliced onion.
Fry the onion until light golden brown.
With a slotted spoon, spoon out the onion and leave to rest on a few layers of kitchen towel. This will drain most of the oil, and crisp up your onion. make sure your onion slices are well separated (otherwise the stick and won't get crunchy)
Breading and frying
Take the chilled bechamel sauce out of the fridge.
Prepare a working are with a bowl of milk and a bowl of breadcrumbs, mixed with salt and pepper.
take a good tablespoon of the filling (bechamel sauce) and roll it in your hand into a log shape. Then roll in through the breadcrumbs, followed by the milk, and again another roll through the breadcrumbs.
Do this with all the filling (bechamel sauce)
Heat the oil in a frying pan, or wok. Fry the croquettes in batches (don't overcrowd the pan), Until they are golden brown on all sides.
Remove them with a slotted spoon, and leave to rest on a paper towel lined plate or tray. Until they are all ready, and plating can begin.
Mix the cooled and crunchy fried onion into your salad (keep a few separate for decoration). Layer a small layer of salad on your plate.
Reheat the celeriac puree, and with the help of two spoons layer a heaped spoonful of puree on top of the salad.
Take the prettiest croquette and layer that on the side onto the puree.
Decorate with some of the crispy fried onion, and some tarragon leaves.
For smoky celeriac puree you could also use some liquid smoke instead of the lapsang tea leaves.