3 green onions, white and green parts chopped separately
3 slices bacon, cooked and chopped fine
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh dill plus extra for garnish
1 1/2 teaspoon fine ground sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tablesppons unsalted butter
2 Tablespoons unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 cup beer (your choice), poured and left to rest for at least 15 minutes
2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon fine ground sea salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
In a large pot, cover the potato cubes with salted water and bring them to a boil. Cover and simmer until the potatoes are tender. Drain and refrigerate them until cold.
In a large bowl, mash the chilled potatoes until smooth. (You can send them through a ricer if you have one, but I find a good masher does the trick.) Add the green portion of the onions, the bacon, dill, 1 1/4 teaspoons of the salt, and the pepper to the potatoes. Stir well until all ingredients are combined.
Create the croquettes by scooping out 2 level tablespoons of the potato mixtrure. Form it into a round, slightly flat disk and place it on a large baking sheet. Repeat with all of the mashed potatoes. Refrigerate the croquettes for 15 to 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 425 °F.
Place the eggs in a shallow bowl and add 1 tablespoon of water. Whisk until the eggs and water are combined. In a second shallow bowl, combine the panko bread crumbs, garlic powder, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt.
Remove the croquettes from the refrigerator. Dip each one in the egg and then coat with the bread crumbs. Place them on a lightly greased or silicone-lined baking sheet. You may need to work in two batches depending on the size of your baking sheet. The croquettes can be placed about a 1/2 inch apart.
Bake them for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, carefully flip the croquettes over, and bake them for 5 to 7 more minutes, until golden brown.
To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the reserved white parts of the onions and the garlic. Cook for about 1 minute. Reduce the heat to medium and add the butter. Just as all the butter melts, add the flour. Whisk the flour into the butter to create a paste. Continue to whisk for 15 to 20 seconds.
Pour in the beer and continue to whisk vigorously until the liquid is smooth with no lumps. Continue to whisk as the sauce simmers and begins to thicken, about 2 minutes. Add the cheese and reduce the heat to low. Whisk until it is melted. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Remove from the heat and serve with the warm croquettes. Garnish them with additional dill, if desired.
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