From scratch: Cheese-stuffed tuna patties

I don’t really have a reason why I made these patties the day I made them. We just had a bunch of tuna stocked in the pantry and I was jonesing for something fried. And wouldn’t you know, turns out, people all over the world have been cooking up these things called tuna patties, so I decided to try them out myself.

Looking at a lot of recipes online, they were all pretty standard: just mix tuna with potatoes and a lot of other ingredients, fry them up, and voila! But for my own try, I thought I’d kick things up a notch by adding an extra ingredient: cheese. Why cheese? Because… do I really need a reason? Cheese just makes everything better, which is what happened here.

Oh, and the best part is, it’s so filling, it doesn’t just have to be a snack. You can eat it alone (which is what I did, and no, not woe-is-me-I-have-no-friends alone), but everyone else in the house opted to have it with rice. Either way, if you like anything crispy, cheesy, and potato-ey, you’re going to enjoy this. Trust me.

Ingredients:
10 oz (300g) potatoes, boiled and chilled
1 can tuna in oil, drained and flaked
1/2 cup corn kernels
1/4 cup white onion
1 egg
Juice from one lemon
1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs
150g cheese, divided into 10 portions
Salt and freshly ground pepper, about 1/2 teaspoon each

For dredging:
Flour
Egg
Panko

What to do:
1. In a bowl, mash the potatoes and add tuna, onions, corn, bread crumbs, egg, salt, and pepper. Mix well.

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2. Divide the batch into 10. If you want to be perfectly accurate like me, use a scale to get equal-sized balls.
3. Take one ball, split it into two, press a square of cheese into one half, press the two halves together and form a patty. Do the same to the nine other balls.

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4. Stick the patties in the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour until they’re stiff enough to work with (and try to keep the green jokes to a minimum).
5. Prepare flour, eggs, and Panko each in a separate container. Also, put a pan with oil over medium heat.
6. Once the pan is hot enough, dredge each patty into the flour, then the eggs, then the bread crumbs, and lay them slowly into the pan. Only dredge enough patties that will fit in the pan at a time; this ensures optimum coating crispness. Or so they say.

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7. Once the patties are brown on one side, flip them.

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8. Take the cooked patties out of the pan and lay them on paper napkins to absorb the oil. Serve hot with your choice of dipping sauce.

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I decided to whip up a garlic mayo dip (garlic, mayo, salt, pepper, parsley, and lemon juice), which actually went well with the patties. I hope you give these crunchy, cheesy patties a shot and let me know how they turn out.

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