My Dad’s family history is Northern Irish so the history of the country’s political divisions, their humour and food traditions were something I learned about from a very young age. The potato is a crucial part of that political, humour and food history. Besides the devastating effects of the potato famine, the success or failure of potato crops was the root of centuries of taxation wars on the farming tenants, evictions, uprisings and a wealth of potato recipes for good and bad harvests. Boxty is filling and tasty and the perfect breakfast dish to soak up the Guinness you may have had the night before.
Serves 2 Adults & 2 Kids
120g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
160g mashed or cooked potato
100g grated potato
60g sour cream
60ml cup milk
- Sift the flour into a mixing bowl and add the baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl combine the cooked potato and grated potato then add the potato mix to the flour and use a fork to combine.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the milk and sour cream then gradually add it to the large mixing bowl, mixing with your fork, until you have a potatoy dough. This is enough dough for six cakes. 2 each for the adults and 1 each for the kids.
- Pre-heat the oven to warm (about 100°C (80°C fan). In a large frying pan heat 20g of butter on a medium high heat (you don’t want the butter to burn). Once the butter is foaming add your first blob of mixture and use your spoon to make a cake shape. Repeat until you have 3 cakes in the pan. You don’t want to overcrowd the pan so that you get crispy rather than soggy cakes.
- Leave the cakes to cook (don’t move them) for 5 minutes. Check the underside and if they’re beautifully golden add another 10g of butter to the pan then turn over the cakes and cook for another 4 minutes until they’re golden brown on both sides. Transfer the cakes to a heatproof dish and pop them in the oven while you do the next batch of cakes.
- Add another 20g of butter and if your pan has become too hot turn it down a notch to make sure the butter doesn’t burn. Repeat the process and add the next three cakes until they’re brown. Pop these cakes in the oven for 5 minutes to cook through while you fry some eggs and warm some beans. Then serve with freshly ground pepper and sprinkles of chopped chives.