This recipe is based on one that Alice's mother was taught at
school in the 1940s. It is meant to be a way of using up
left-over mashed potato. It is better when made with
floury/baking potatoes rather than waxy/new/salad potatoes.
Makes 4 normal potato cakes or
2 potato cakes in the German style (more pancakey); multiply up
Note: the quantities in this recipe are based on the boiled
weight of potato, and a potato will only lose weight through
being peeled and boiled; a 160 gm potato out of the bag will
likely result in 120 gm of boiled potato.
Note: The dough made in this recipe freezes very well. If
you use a large baking potato, weighing more like 240 gm, that
should allow you to make double the quantity. Roll all the
dough into balls and freeze the ones youíre not going to use
straight away. Get them out of the freezer about an hour
before you want to cook them.
1 smallish baking potato (around 120 gm in weight)
butter for frying
For every 120 gm of potato:
30 gm butter or, if in the German style, just 15 gm butter
1/4 tsp salt
75 gm plain white flour mixed with 30 gm wholemeal flour
or, if in the German style, just 30 gm plain white flour
if in the German style, olive oil for frying
Peel the potato and cut it into four.
Fill a medium saucepan half full of water and bring the
water to the boil.
Add the potato pieces and let them boil gently for 22
minutes; the potatoes need to be slightly over-cooked so that
they are soft and just starting to fall apart.
Drain the potato pieces and put them in a large bowl.
Mash the potatoes with a potato masher, or with a fork if
you don't have a potato masher (though that will be harder).
Weigh the resulting mash and work out how much of the other
ingredients you need for the quantity of mash you have.
Mix the butter and salt in with the mash.
Mix in the flour.
Knead the mixture into a soft dough with your hands.
Divide the dough into four pieces.
Roll each piece into a ball in your hands and then squash
each one into a flat, round, cake just under 1 cm thick.
Heat a generous knob of butter in a frying pan and add the
Cook them until the underside is browned; donít fiddle with
them too soon as they are inclined to stick when not browned
and so might break up.
Turn them over and cook them on the other side, adding more
butter/olive-oil to the pan if necessary.
Method, In The German Style
The method above is modified as follows:
At step 10 divide the dough into two pieces rather than
four; at step 11 you should end up with a rather larger potato
cake of the same thickness and may need a fish slice to
transfer it to the frying pan.
At step 11 squash the somewhat softer potato cakes on a
floured surface to avoid them sticking.
At step 12 use olive oil instead of butter, completely
coating the bottom of the pan, with the heat set to medium.
Place a cake in the pan and, while it is cooking, use the fish
slice to lift it and swizzle the pan so that, as much as is
possible, the cake floats, in the oil; otherwise the cake will
absorb the oil in the middle underneath it and will not brown
evenly. Turn the cake over after about 2 minutes and repeat on
the other side.