Monday, March 19, 2012

COOKING: German Potato Pancakes

I don't know about you, but sometimes I get a craving for something that my mum made for us during our childhood or the "still at home" years. My late mother was from the border of Slovenia and Austria and my dad is German. They both migrated to Australia after WWII. We lost mum to cancer in 2006. Mum was a great cook, and I had all my basic training from her. She always used to tell me to "take in" how she cooked things - because she said I will probably want to cook them after she was no longer on this earth. How right she was (!).

In the last month or so I had been having a craving for her "German potato pancakes". Funny, in the past, I've tried to make their magic up out of thin air - guessing at the ingredients - and had dismal failures to prove how right Mum was in wanting me to watch, look and learn.

In desperation I got onto google and did some internet searching.......Ding Ding.......we have a winner!!! SO HAPPY that the net saved me - fantastic invention!!!

Here you go - this you will enjoy - totally brought back all good Sunday night memories:

Peel 1 kg of floury potatoes and 1 brown onion. Grate using the small grater holes into a bowl. Using a clean tea towel or muslin, line a sieve and then drop the potato and onion into the towel. Twist and squeeze water out. I managed to get two cups (500ml) of water out of my vegetables. The more water you can extract - the less oil the pancakes will take up from your frypan - and the crisper they will be. (*yay*)

Add 3 eggs, 1 teaspoon salt and a good grind of pepper. Mix well into the potato and onion.

Add 5 tablespoons of plain flour and mix till combined.

Heat about 1/4 cup of neutral oil (like sunflower, vegetable or rice bran) into a non stick fry pan. On a medium heat drop small amounts into the pan and flatten with a spoon. The flatter you manage to get them - the crisper they will be. NB: the baby pancake is my "I can't wait to taste this recipe tester bit"

Flip over when nice and golden - doesn't take long keep watch. Drain and dab with paper towels. You can keep them in a warm oven until you have fried them all if you like.

I know my husbands taste - so his got topped with smoked salmon, sour cream and fresh garlic chives.

He loved them (so did Rubie our mini schnauzer)!

Again - back to the childhood - mine were simply sprinkled with white sugar. I know it sounds bizarre - but it's really really good.

This recipe made 14 small pancakes and fed two greedy adults. A few little pieces were scored by the schnauzer.

I give these a most appreciative 10/10. 


  1. OMD OMD... my MOM says that HER mom used to make these a LOT... and guess what.. she always put a tiny bit of sugar right IN the mixture when she added the eggs and flour. YOURS look so Crispy and delicious!!!

  2. Thanks, Poots, for a great recipe. My Mom used to make a version of these when I was a kid. She used left over mashed potatoes, onion and eggs. They were yummy, probably not as crispy as yours but not as much work either!

    I love the 'net for all the old recipes you can find. Just type the name into Google and you will probably have your choice!

    Jo, Stella and Zkhat

    1. Hi Jo - I have attempted to use mashed potato and it cannot deliver the same texture or consistency that I needed to come close to the childhood memory. Yes - it was messy - but totally worth the grating effort. I almost cried for joy when I crunched that little tester bit!! Also - the number of eggs are the key - I never would have put three into this amount of potato, but it's essential to get the end result.

      I also love the net - makes my heaving book case of cookery books and mags seem....... obsolete (?)

      Thanks for reading!

  3. Oooh I'm going to have to make these! My Mum used to make potato panckaes regularly, I'd forgotten all about them, these sound a bit more fancy - yummy!!! Di xxx

  4. Hello again, it's Oscar's mom - so glad you stopped by my blog! That recipe sounds delicious. Great tip about getting the water out of the veggies before frying - I never knew that before. I am clearly an amateur! I guess my tastes run similar to your husband's because the picture of the pancake with the salmon looked sooo good!

  5. I know exactly what you mean by craving something your mom used to make when you were still at home. I always crave my Moms spaghetti sauce. My Mom used to make potato pancakes too. I have tried a few recipes and have never gotten them exactly right. I am definitely trying this one. They look absolutely yummy! I may even try them with sugar. :)