Saint Valentine…don´t you mean San Jacobo?

I have a work project on at the moment which is keeping me busy, so at home we´ve got a week or so of quicker to cook dishes coming up, or slow cooked dishes that I can put in the oven and then forget about for a few hours.

This speedy light lunch or supper is often served as a “child friendly” dish here in Spain. Sometimes you just don´t fancy “fancy” food. Something simple and speedy, and just a little naughty is required.  Deep fried ham and cheese coated in breadcrumbs hits the spot.  And if you serve it up with a dollop of ketchup and a fried egg with a runny yolk – well I won´t tell anyone that you´re not 9 years old!

Per person you´ll need

  • 2 large slices of your favourite ham
  • Enough thin slices of cheese to almost cover the ham (choose one that melts like cheddar, mozzarella etc)
  • A beaten egg plus 2 tablespoons of milk (this is enough for 4 slices of ham)
  • Dried breadcrumbs to coat the ham
  • Hot oil for frying

Place the cheese on the ham and either roll it up or fold it over to make a “sandwich”. Use a toothpick if necessary to keep your San Jacobo closed, but don´t forget to remove before eating…!

Dip the ham in the egg then the breadcrumbs and then repeat. This will give you a good seal so that the cheese doesn´t ooze out as it melts when it cooks, and a super crispy coating.

Get your oil very hot and fry (you can deep or shallow fry – your decision). Remove when browned and serve immediately.

I tried to find out why these little fried ham parcels are called “Saint Jacobs” but no one seems to know.  At least it makes the meal sound a little more gourmet than it actually is.  Make sure you have a cold beer to hand as a medical aid in case you burn your tongue on that lovely melted cheese.

PS. Happy Valentine´s Day to you all – young. old, single or happily with someone, it´s all about love…so go on, go out today and hug someone!

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67 thoughts on “Saint Valentine…don´t you mean San Jacobo?

  1. Oh my. If I were to make this my arteries will not thank me but my taste buds would :o)). Why oh why is it that these two are so often at odds? No, don’t answer that, I’ll ignore the cries from one side or the other at my leisure thanks.

    All I have to do now is convert one of my daughters to the value of cheese and we’ll be having this when I get back from the supermarket…..

    1. Can´t imagine life without cheese! And I guess you could spray it with a little oil and bake it to make it healthier…it´s not something we eat every day (or even every month), but it was what we needed 🙂

      1. Yeah but baking it wouldn’t be as tasty!! Don’t get me wrong this is going to be made at some stage when I decide I have to try it (probably soon)… I too couldn’t live without cheese …. Gorgeous stuff. Oh, except blue.

  2. These do look good, Tanya, and a little of what’s bad for us is a good thing. At least that’s what I tell myself whenever I start heating up the oil to deep fry something. Here’s wishing you and “Big Man” a great Valentine’s Day!

    1. Thanks John and wishing you a lovely day too … it´s all a bit silly really isn´t it?! And yes, a little of what is bad for us just every now and then is not such a bad thing 😉

  3. My husband would absolutely love these. Maybe I should make him some for a valentines day dinner? (Actually my mouth is now watering quite a lot too… I think I’ll need to have a trial run at lunch first)!! x

  4. Looks very good, Tanya. To my husband who loves the Dutch “kroket”, this will also become an instant favorite along with his very cold beer. 😉

      1. If you´re brave and get that oil really hot, it´s not in there for long (which I guess is a little healthier) and it´s wonderfully crispy….and yes, any age will do!

  5. Happy Valentines Day Tanya! What an interesting recipe!! I’ve never seen this before. Its going to be a nice weekend lunch very soon! I know my son will absolutely love this!!

  6. Oh Chica – these look amazing! Totally amazing… they remind me a bit of the french “Cordon Bleu”, but those are usually made with turkey I think, and are usually a rather sorry looking affair compared to these golden, home-made, delicious little packets.

    Cheese and ham is always a sure-fire winner – nice one 😀

  7. Don’t you worry, you can go ahead and tell the truth: I *am* a nine-year-old! So many fabulous favorite ingredients in one meal!!!! Out of my way, I’m coming through! 😀

  8. Basically… croquetas!!! I LOVE, LOVE, LOOOOOOVE croquetas. My mother-in-law spoils me and makes us all sorts of croquetas to freeze and take home with us. It was also the very first thing she taught me to make after D-Man and I had been dating for only 3 months (the spinach ones con piñones, mmmmm). Oh yours look so deliciously cheesy… no joke, I’m almost crying over here, I want one soo baadly!!

    1. They are almost aren´t they! And you´re lucky your suegra taught you to make croquetas – I had to figure it out myself 😦 I love them too, wish she´d send me over a batch for my freezer 😉

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