Umlauts at the ready: Parsnip and potato rösti

Continuing on the theme of maligned vegetables, these little beauties are a good way of sneaking goodness into people who think röstis are the food of the gods but have a little whinge when you try and feed them parsnips. It’s quite a specific group, but people who fall outside the intersection of this particular Venn diagram will like them too.

The recipe’s from the new Nigel Slater book, which is so full of gorgeous combinations like this, I’ve gone so far as to tag the recipes I want to make first.

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Take two large potatoes and two large parsnips. Scrub the potatoes, there’s no need to peel them, and then grate them. If you have one, a food processor will make light work of this. A lot of water will come out of the potatoes when you grate them, leave that behind and then squeeze the potatoes to get some more water out. I have a brilliant new salad spinner (it has a brake!) which helps.

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Leave the potatoes in a  colander to drain further while you peel and grate the parsnips. Mix the two piles of grated veg together and add a large egg and two tablespoons of plain flour. Give this a really good stir. Heat a thin layer of oil in a frying pan over a high heat. Turn the heat down to medium and take handfuls of the mixture, squashing it down into a patty as you add it to the pan.

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Now, and this is important, leave the rösti for 10  minutes. Don’t move it, even if you think it’s burning. You need to create a good crust on the bottom so you can flip them. After ten minutes, gingerly flip them over and then leave for another ten minutes. Then slide the röstis onto a baking tray lined with baking paper and bake them at about 180 for a further 20 minutes, while you make four more.

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We had these rösti as a meal in their own right with a fried egg and the end slices of a bacon joint, but they’re great as a side. Nigel tops them with sticky caramelised shallots and goats cheese. They’ll reheat for the next day if you want to make them the night before and have them with a fry up.

 

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