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Rosti (potato pancake)

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The classic Swiss potato pancake is made with starchy potatoes and butter and is an excellent partner for grilled sausages.

There are many different methods for what appears to be a simple dish. Having tried, and failed many times I was delighted when I used this method to finally make a rosti. Use starchy potatoes, never pre-cook them and dry the grated potato in at least one but preferably two clean tea towels. The potato will lose around 20% of it's weight in water and the dry potato will then form into a cake, it will work!

I use a heavy, non stick pan with a diameter of 22 cm or 9 inches. A larger pan will mean that the rosti will be too thin, you are aiming for a cooked potato cake which is around 1 inch thick.

Purists may disagree but rosti made with fresh herbs (parsley and chives), chopped bacon and onions or topped with cheese (cheddar, emmental or gruyere) are excellent.

1 kg starchy potatoes (baking, russets or all purpose)
100 g butter
Salt and black pepper
2 clean tea towels


Peel and coarsely grate the potatoes
Dry the grated potatoes by heaping them on a clean tea towel, gathering the corners together, wrapping them up and squeezing to press out as much water as possible. Repeat this with a second clean tea towel
Lightly season the potatoes with salt and black pepper
Add any extras - fresh herbs, grated onions or finely chopped bacon
Melt half of the butter in a non stick frying pan (approx 9 inch diameter)
Wait for the foam to subside and spread the potato mixture over the hot pan to make a cake, tuck more butter around the sides of the pan, press the cake with a spoon or spatula
Cook on a low heat for 15 - 20 minutes, pressing occasionally
Once the rosti is brown and crispy on the underside, loosen, place a large plate on top and invert
Add the remaining butter and then slide the uncooked side into the pan and cook for around 10 minutes until browned
If using cheese add 5 minutes before you think the rosti will be done
Rosti can be reheated or eaten cold but is best served immediately

Suggested Sausages

Rosti is rich and the butter taste permeates the dish so eat it with either plain pork or pork and herb sausages

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