Somewhere, subconsciously, I must have seen a potato rösti. I’ve no idea where, but I couldn’t stop thinking about giant, crispy potato cakes. Golden brown, crunchy on the outside, soft and potato-y within. And the size of a dinner plate. Mmmmm.
I began to look for recipes, and quickly discovered that there existed a schism, between those rösti-makers who parboiled the potatoes before grating, and those who did not.
And what else goes in a rösti? Onions seemed universal, but flour? Eggs? Seasoning? Other vegetables? Herbs?
Then there was the cooking. Frying for 10 minutes each side seemed the norm, but I was sceptical about my ability to turn the thing over without mangling it into hash browns.
Ultimately, I made something approaching Evelyn’s potato kugel, but I fried it first in my tarte tatin tin (try saying that after a few gins) to crisp up the bottom, before transferring it to the oven. Once cooked, I slipped it out onto a plate and served it in wedges, a la rösti.
It served two adults and a small person, and tasted just like a rösti should 🙂
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Baked potato rösti
- 600 g potatoes
- 1 medium onion
- 2 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil
- 1 egg beaten
- 25 g self-raising flour
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 180C.
- Peel and grate the potatoes. Put the grated potato in a sieve, over a bowl (or the sink) and press down to remove some of the liquid. Leave to drain for around 10 minutes.
- Peel and grate the onion. (I did all the grating - potatoes and onion - in the food processor. Super quick.)
- Tip the grated potato into a mixing bowl and add the onion, egg, flour and seasoning. Mix everything together very thoroughly - a fork or your hands are the best utensils here.
- Heat the oil in a tarte tatin tin, heavy-bottommed cake tin, or ovenproof frying pan. Swirl or use a basting brush to oil the sides as well as the bottom. Tip in the potato mixture and press it down into an even layer, right to the edges. Cook on a medium heat for 5-8 minutes, until you can see it starting to brown a little at the edges.
- Transfer to the oven and bake for 45-60 minutes, until golden and pulling away at the sides of the tin.
- Invert rösti onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve.
*If I was about to be cast away to a desert island with only one recipe book, Evelyn Rose’s New Complete International Jewish Cookbook would be it. It is ridiculously comprehensive, and includes just about every Jewish favourite you care to mention, alongside traditional British dishes and recipes from the far-flung corners of the globe. It will tell you how to cook meat, poultry, fish, vegetarian dishes, side dishes, salads, soups, desserts, cakes, biscuits… There are menu suggestions, lists of substitutions, tables of equivalent weights and measures. And what’s more, the recipes are clear, easy to follow and give brilliant results! The woman was a culinary genius. I had the pleasure/stress of cooking for her once, many years ago, but that’s a story for another blog post…