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Potato Cakes

This is a very traditional recipe for potato cakes, with only a few ingredients.  Potatoes, salt, butter and flour.  Its like magic!  Simple ingredients put together in a very delicious way. These little cakes are ideal served warm, for breakfast or tea time!

You wouldn't think that a few simple ingredients could create something so tasty, but they do. Proof positive that some of the very best things in life are, and come from . . .  simple things.  Mashed potatoes (without any milk added) are mixed together with a knob of butter until it melts, and a hefty pinch of salt.  You then let it cool to room temperature.  Once it is cold you knead in plain flour, and that it is.  Roughly 1/3 the weight of flour as the potatoes.  Make sure your potatoes are really dry when you mash them.  Shake the pot over the residual heat in the burner to dry them out. You also want to use a floury type of potato, suitable for mashing. Not a new potato, but a good, old potato.

Once you have the flour kneaded in, you roll the mixture out to a rectangle about 1/2 inch in thickness and  cut it  into triangles. I cut it once through the middle lengthwise, and then into squares crosswise and then cut the squares into triangles across the middle.  Easy peasy.

They are then "Baked" on top of the stove on a hot griddle pan/heavy based frying pan.  First until golden on the underside, and then flip and brown on the other side.  Don't be in too much of a hurry. You want them to cook in the middle.

They are lovely served warm,  just as they are  . . . with a cooked breakfast . . .  eggs, bacon, sausage  . . . perhaps with a bit of butter to melt on top.

They are lovely served for breakfast kind of like a stodgy pancake, buttered and served hot with sugar for sprinkling . . .  maybe even cinnamon sugar.

We like them warm with butter and jam.  To each their own.  They really are very nice. Very nice indeed.   I think they are really very, very special.

*Potato Cakes*
Makes approximately 12

A traditional recipe, normally baked on an iron "Griddle" or in a heavy skillet. Ideal served warm with sugar and butter, but we enjoy them with butter and jam. They also go well with a full cooked breakfast.

350g freshly boiled potato,
mashed with a large knob of butter
and plenty of salt while still hot (NO milk)
(about 1 pound peeled and mashed)
140g plain flour (1 cup)

After you have mashed your potatoes (smooth as you can) and melted the butter in them.  Allow to cool completely.  Add the flour to make a smooth pliable dough, kneading it in. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to a rectangle which is 1/2 inch thick. Cut into triangles.

 Heat a dry griddle pan or heavy bottomed skillet over medium low heat.  Place the potato cakes in it and brown first on one side, and then the other.  This should take about 3 minutes per side. Don't be in a hurry. You want them to cook through the middle without burning on the outside.  Serve warm.

I love these old traditonal recipes. I feel like I am eating the history of my ancestors with every mouthful. There is great value in them, as simple as they are.  They are really pretty wonderful. I hope you will give these tasty little cakes a go. I think you will agree with me in saying they are very special indeed.  Bon Appetit!

Marie Rayner
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  1. I love seeing your tea cozy in pics!:)Had never heard of these!

    1. It’s a very old traditional recipe! Oh, I am in love with your bunny cosy! I have the pattern, I better make me one of those! Xo

  2. How versatile! And they look really tasty!

    1. Thanks very much Jeanie! They’re stodgy but in a very good way! Xo

  3. Nice to finally have ratio's I'm addicted to these things but only had a recipe that read add flour to mashed potatoes and fry, so sometimes they came out good but other times not so good 8(. The swedes have a dish called Kropkakor, that is a potato dumpling filled with onions, salt pork and alspice. Its a lot of work and usually only made around the holidays but when I top these potato cakes with some fried pork its close enough to make me feel like i'm at my MorMor's kitchen table.

    1. I hope you try these and they turn out for you! Your Kropkakor sound really delicious!

  4. I had never really seemed to get the flour to potato ratio right so I thank you so much for the tip. I'm going to weigh my potatoes and flour next time. I love potato pancakes!

    1. They are not quite like a pancake, and not quite like a scone Katy. They are something in between! Very scrummy! xo

  5. Thank you so much for this recipe. We ate them in UK and loved them, now I can make them here in the US :)


    1. You are very welcome Soma! I hope you enjoy them! xo

  6. how much exactly potato you are using? the recipe mention 350g, but also mention 1 pound mashed and peeled,which is 450g...

    1. "About" 1 pound. I weighed and I had 350g once they were mashed. You will want roughly 1/3 as much flour as you have potato. Hope this helps.

  7. I searched dictionaries and the internet and finding the definition of”a knob of butter” took a good amount of time. It is VERY subjective and runs anywhere from a generous Tablespoon; a piece the size of a walnut; about 2 ounces up to a very generous 2 Tablespoons. It’s all dependent upon the baker and the recipe. It is a distinctive British word, (don’t know where it came) and is only used in recipes calling for an amount of butter. That’s the best I could do in finding more about this interesting British terminology. 🌵🐝💜

    1. Yo are right it is very subjective and dependant on the recipe. For these, I tend to use butter about the size of a whole walnut in the shell! xo


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