These little patties make for the best kind of dinner brunch. The potatoes are roughly mashed, with lumpy bits and potato skin making for perfectly uneven cakes, all the better for crisping up in the pan. The crispy chilli oil isn’t essential – I’m just addicted to it. You could have these with a fried egg, a green salad with a lemony dressing, or with some sautéed, garlicky cabbage.
Prep time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes
600g cooked and cooled Maris Piper potatoes (skin on)
1 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp salt
90g Cheddar, roughly chopped
1 egg, beaten
Olive oil, for frying
A pinch of cayenne pepper
125g spring onions, sliced into 2-inch batons
A few chives, snipped
Crispy chilli oil, as much as you like
First, make the brown butter. Set a small saucepan over a low-medium heat and melt the butter. Cook it for about 11 minutes, maybe a bit longer, or until the butter is browning and smells sweetly nutty and toffeeish. Watch it while it’s cooking, coaxing the foam out of the way occasionally so you can check what colour the milk solids are turning. Don’t let them burn. When the liquid is golden, the solids pale brown, turn the heat down, add the cayenne pepper (and swirl the pan) and remove it from the heat. You’ll use it later for the spring onions.
In a large bowl or pan, roughly mash the potatoes. Some chunks are good – you want the potato cakes to be uneven so they crisp up well.
Add the flour and salt along with plenty of black pepper to the potatoes and mix well. Then add the cheese and mix so it’s evenly distributed. Finally, add the egg and mix so the potato comes together. Use your hands to form the mixture into patties about the size of a burger. This should make eight patties.
Set a large frying pan over a low-medium heat and add a good glug of oil. Fry the patties, taking care not to overcrowd the pan. I tend to fry three or four at a time in a large pan. Cook them slowly, for about four minutes on each side, not flipping them until the base has turned golden brown. Set aside on a warm plate while you cook the rest.
Meanwhile, make the spring onions. Put the butter back on the heat and when it’s hot, add the onions. Cook for two minutes in the hot butter, then remove from the hob.
To serve, spoon warm buttery spring onions over the potato cakes, the chives and a couple of teaspoonfuls of crispy chilli oil.