Chilli cheese nuggets used to be my favourite snack while I was living in Germany. There it was readily available in supermarkets to be baked into oven. Here in Netherlands, though one can find different croquettes with cheese, meat or vegetables, chilli cheese nuggets seem to be missing. So to reinstate the taste of melting cheese in my mouth with crispy fried breadcrumb coating, I thought to give it a try at home.
Selection of proper cheese for this recipe was a challenge at the beginning. Netherlands is a heaven for cheese lovers and one is amused to find the vast collection of cheeses here. Initially I tried this recipe with good quality cheeses but without much success. Finally I succeeded with “processed cheese”. The emulsifying salts, present in processed cheese, results in a product that melts without separating when cooked. However for natural cheeses (especially cheddar and mozzarella), they tend to separate into a lumpy, molten protein gel & liquid fat combination with prolonged heating, which is not desirable for this recipe. Rest of the process was rather simple and easy to be followed. You can enjoy this mouth-watering snack with a hot cup of tea/coffee.
Chilli cheese nugget
Ingredients for 60 pieces. :
- Processed cheese slices – 400 gm.
- Big chilli or Jalapeno – 3
- Egg – 3
- Black pepper powder – 1 teaspoon
- Paprika – ½ teaspoon
- Salt to taste
- Breadcrumbs to coat
- Oil for deep-frying
Remove the seeds from the chillies and finely chop them.
Chopping the chillies
Roughly chop the cheese slices and transfer to a heat proof bowl or steel pan. Set the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water and heat until melted completely to liquid, stir occasionally.
Remove it from the heat and stir in the chopped chillies.
Now line the bottom and sides of a square/rectangular shape plastic box with cling film and transfer the liquid cheese mixture into it, smooth the top.
Mixing chopped chillies with liquid cheese
Cheese mixture, ready to go into the refrigerator
Chill it in the refrigerator for 3 hours to form a cheese block.
Now cut the cheese block into cubes of your desired size.
Beat eggs in a bowl, mix salt, pepper and paprika.
Cheese block cut into cubes
Dip cheese cubes in egg mixture and then coat with bread crumbs. Repeat the process once more and chill in the refrigerator for 30-40 minutes.
Nuggets are ready to fry
Heat sufficient oil over medium-high heat and deep fry the nuggets.
Transfer to a paper towel to absorb excess oil and serve hot.
Hot chilli cheese nuggets are ready to be served
- Chilli cheese nuggets can’t be baked in oven. In that case cheese will melt fast while the outer coating will remain uncooked. But you can shallow fry the nuggets uniformly instead of deep-frying.
- You can shallow fry the nuggets and refrigerate them in an air tight container or plastic bag for a long. Take them out from the refrigerator and bake in the oven when needed.
- If you want to make the dish completely vegetarian then make a flour/cornflour batter instead of egg.