Happy New Year friends! I’ve been telling my parents how quickly this year went by– and what a joyous one it was– and they just smile and nod their heads, saying, “You have no idea.” Time is a fickle friend.
I have eaten myself into a contented food coma this past week– I hope you have too. Celebrations and feasting come hand in hand– followed by a proper fast of light meals and raw veggies of course. It’s like the food hang over remedy.
Hang overs happen after a period of over-indulgence. It’s that painful, regretful, slow-passing period of time where we apologize to our bodies for all the trouble we put it through (double-fisting cookies always seems like a good idea at first.) In dealing with hang overs of all sorts, the best way to slip out of one habit and into another is gently. Bloody Marys make the morning after a few hard drinks seem a bit less nauseating. A little laundry folding and floor sweeping makes a spell of laziness hang-over ease away. Left over Christmas dinner mashed potatoes, seasoned up and fried crispy, eases us out of holiday eating, and into the lighter, healthier eating of common days. We are human after all. Blunt changes are always met with opposition. Transitioning is key.
Potato cakes are incredibly versatile little things.
Any mix of mash can be used to make delicious potato cakes–cheesy mash, garlic and herb, jalapeño and onions– though most people prefer a classic, buttery, simple potato cake. I think a well salted and buttered bowl of plain o’ mashed potatoes works as the best base.
After a good toss in egg and flour, potato cakes are ready to be fried crispy, and served with something light and fresh. Sour cream with chopped fresh herbs is delicious. Some enjoy a sweet topping, like applesauce. For you Southerners, I hear catsup is also in the works for potato cakes (I do love me some catsup.)
Ease into 2013. It is a blank canvas, unwritten pages. Another year is here, and it will be what we build it to be.
You will need:
- 2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
- 1 whole egg
- 1/4 cup white flour
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour (for coating before frying) (optional)
Mix cold mashed potatoes, egg, and white flour together. We use white flour in this portion of the recipe simply because it holds better– coarse ground wheat flours are grainier and make a strange texture inside the mashed potatoes, which should still feel smooth even inside the cake. Shape little patties. *Optional*– coat patties in a little dusting of whole wheat flour or coarse ground breadcrumbs for extra crunch. In a medium heated cast iron skillet, warm a few tablespoons of olive oil. Fry the potato cakes until golden brown, and let rest on a paper towel to absorb extra oil. Serve with chopped fresh herbs and sour cream.