4 medium or 2 large russet potatoes, peeled and diced into 1-inch pieces
12 cloves roasted garlic, puréed (DIY here)
1 cup ricotta or labneh
1 cup grated Romano
1½ tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
½ cup flour
2 Tbsp. milk
1 cup breadcrumbs
Vegetable oil or lard, for frying
• Day 1: Place the potatoes in a medium pot. Fill with enough water to cover the potatoes by 1 inch. Partially cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil 20 minutes, until fork tender. Drain and place in a large mixing bowl.
• Use a potato masher or pastry cutter to mash the potatoes until smooth. Add the ricotta, Romano, onion powder, salt and pepper and mash until the texture is smooth and even. Taste and adjust seasoning.
• Prepare to dredge by pouring the flour in a shallow dish. In another dish, whisk the egg and milk together to create an egg wash. In a third dish, pour the breadcrumbs.
• Use your hands to form ¼ cup potato mixture into a ball. Gently roll the ball in the flour to lightly coat, then dip it in the egg wash, gently letting the excess drip off. Roll it in the breadcrumbs, shake off any excess, and place on a large plate. Repeat with the remaining potato mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
• Day 2: Fill a deep cast-iron or heavy-bottomed skillet with 2 to 3 inches vegetable oil or lard. Warm over high heat until it reaches 350 degrees, then lower to medium, adjusting as necessary to maintain a consistent temperature. Working in batches of 4, fry the potato balls 1 to 2 minutes, until golden-brown all over and warm throughout. Remove and let drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
• Serve hot over a bed of Lebanese Cole Slaw (see recipe).