I have always loved fried grated potatoes; hash browns, rostis and latkes. The crispy, slightly salty shreds of potatoes must sit right up there in the list of comfort foods. But it took Ottolenghi and Tamimi’s Jerusalem cookbook to convince me to try making them. And wow. These. Are. Good. Supremely good. So good, that I made them two weekends in a row. (All the accolades you’ve heard about Jerusalem is true, it’s a stunningly beautiful cookbook with fantastic yet accessible recipes).
I will say that unless you have a food processor, the grating task might actually put you off the recipe. I took a slight liberty with the recipe, only because my chive plants will not grow, whilst my parsley plants are taking over the garden.
Ingredients: (for 12 latkes)
4 medium all-purpose potato, – I used Rua (to give ~600g grated)
2 large or 3 medium parsnips (to give ~300g grated)
30g flat-leaved parsley, finely chopped
4 egg whites
2 Tbsp cornflour
Salt & black pepper to season
Butter and olive oil for frying
Sour cream to serve
Fill a large bowl with cold water. Peel the potatoes, and grate them using a food processor. The potatoes will release a lot of starch, so dunk all the grated potato into the water, and rinse to remove the starch. Drain, and put the shreds in the middle of a clean teatowel and squeeze out as much water as you can. This is very important, as you want crispy potatoes, not mashed or steamed potatoes.
Peel and grate the parsnip. In a large bowl add in the grated potato and parsnip, egg whites, chopped parsley, cornflour and several good pinches of salt and black pepper. Using your hands, combine the ingredients well.
Heat a non-stick pan, put in a tablespoon of butter and a glug of oil (you will need more than you think). Using your hand, take a golf sized ball of mixture, squeeze it together, then place on the hot pan and flatten it using the back of a spatula. Cook until golden brown and crispy on the bottom (~3 mins), then flip over and brown the other side. These should be cooked as your guests are sitting down at the dinner table, as you want them nice, crispy and hot. (if you’re me, you’ll get one of your guests to cook these while you are finishing the other dishes)
These are so moreish, that you’ll end up eating more than you expect.