Swede, kale and potato cakesMarch 10, 2008
In Mr Rice’s absence I found myself with a vegetable surplus. I made soup with the leeks and potatoes, and pasta sauce with the peppers and tomatoes, but I was still left with kale, an onion, some small potatoes and a swede. I toyed with the idea of more soup, but we now have something of a soup mountain in the freezer so I decided to think more creatively.I used to love potato cakes when I was a child – made from leftover mashed potato with a little flour added and fried, then slathered in butter – the ultimate comfort food. So, on a gloomy sunday afternoon I decided to recreate this with the vegetables I had left. It worked really well, although it took a while, the final result was exactly what I had hoped for.
Recipe for Swede, kale and potato cakes
1 medium onion
2 tbsps golden caster sugar
4 kale sprigs
1 egg yolk
100g hard cheese, grated
splash of olive oil
2 pinches of sea salt
25g wholemeal flour
Wash or peel the potatoes (I don’t peel potatoes much these days, I like to keep the fibre of the skins), then peel the swede and slice into chip-size pieces and steam for 20-25 minutes, or until they are soft and come apart easily in your fingers.
Meanwhile, heat up half the butter and a splash of olive oil in a frying pan and dice the onions, then slowly fry them until soft and translucent. Then add the sugar and stir well, then turn the heat down and cover, to let them caramelise. About five minutes before the potatoes and swede are cooked put the kale on to steam and remove the cover from the onions. It’s important that the onions are caramelised but don’t have any excess moisture as this will cause the cakes to be less firm, and therefore more difficult to fry.
When the potatoes and swede are cooked, drain them well and heat them up in a pan to get rid of any excess moisture. Start to mash them and then add the onions and the steamed, drained and chopped kale. Mash and combine the mixture well, then add salt and pepper to your taste, remove from the heat and add the grated cheese, and finally the egg yolk.
Dust your hands with a bit of the flour then shape the mixture into 8-10 cakes, put them on a plate and then chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Then heat the remaining butter and another splash of olive oil and gently fry the cakes until browned on both sides. Be very careful when turning them over as they can be fragile!
Serve immediately with salad and houmous.
Make sure you when you fry the cakes that you leave plenty of space in the pan so you can turn them easily.
© Katheryn Rice 2008