Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Accidental Perfect Potato Cakes

Ok, I need a side dish. Quickly. Now. What to do? A look in the fridge reveals potatoes and beets. Both doesn't sound like something that will give me something quickly. Husband is growling in the back - or is it his empty stomach? It needs to jive with the shredded beef with asparagus that I found on my quest to empty the freezer and get it ready for the arrival of the quarter pig.

So what to do? Thin slices are probably a good idea, they'll be done quickly. Get the baking sheet and the mandoline out, turn the broiler on, and slice away, one Russet potato and one beet per person. The beets are - you guessed it - from the farmers market, very pretty things... A drizzle of olive oil, a bit of coarse salt, some pepper, and off they go into the oven.

I have a gas oven with a very powerful broiler, so I put mine in the lower third of the oven and watch them for 10 minutes. When the edges are starting to crisp up I decide it's time to take them out, and test for doneness. Perfect....

The beets are good, nice and sweet, but the potatoes - ohhhh, perfect! They have baked into little cakes that stick together, crisp on the outside, and very tender in the middle. Great as a side dish as you can see. But then we start to think what we could do with them, and we quickly have ideas for perfect little appetizers: A bit of sour cream and smoked salmon or crab meat, or perhaps some olive tapenade for some briny saltiness. Or a sun dried tomato. Stay tuned.....

Update: They were so good I had to make them again the next day, this time with a beet salad topping. The beets were roasted, with a olive oil - orange champagne vinegar vinaigrette, with a healthy helping of capers, for a nice briny tart taste balancing the beets, and giving a great punch to the potatoes. While I still want to try them with sour cream and salmon this was a good start. And really pretty!


  1. Silke, you are making me drool with that last two pictures. The dark magenta are beets, I'm guessing. But what are the pink and orange cubes?

  2. Hey Jenn I missed this comment... The orange cubes are golden beets, and the pink ones are candy beets, they have white and red stripes, really cute.