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Potato Cakes

A few years ago my husband and I stayed at a hotel for our 5-year dating anniversary and walked to a nearby restaurant for dinner that I actually end up frequenting a lot more now that I work so close to it and it's a great place for a business lunch or meeting place. Anyway, I just remember one of the best meals I've had probably in the last 5 years.... Basic Roasted Chicken with Rosemary and Garlic but then the starcy side - Potato Cakes. Not technically potato pancakes but similar in concept. These were more like Crab Cakes with Potato instead.

Well, given that at this time in my life I really didn't know how to cook I actually emailed the restaurant to see if I could snag the recipe. Low and behold the executive chef actually replied with it a few days later! I've tried making these a few times and have never quite gotten them exactly right but last night was the closest I'd gotten...
The general concept of the dish is to take cold mashed potatoes and mold into patties, coat with breading, fry on each side and then finish baking in the oven...

Mashed Potatoes
Source: my refrigerator (what I put in the potatoes depends on what I have on hand!)
Ingredients
2 lbs Baking Potatoes
4 Tablespoons Butter
1 Cup milk
1/2 cup Sour Cream
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
1 tablespoon roasted garlic (about 2 cloves)
S&P to taste
Directions
- fill a large pot with salted water
- wash and peel potatoes and cube in similar sizes
- bring salted water and potatoes to boil, reduce heat slightly and boil potatoes until fork tender
- drain potatoes and dry
- Return potatoes to pot and place over low heat to keep warm
- Add butter, milk, sour cream, parmesan cheese, roasted garlic and S&P
- Using a potato masher mash all ingredients together until desired consistency
- Serve warm
** there are SOOOO many mashed potato variations... I also like to throw in some chives to a recipe similar to this but I didn't have any on hand!**

To make Potato Cakes:
Potato Cakes
Inspired by J.Buck's - a St. Louis restaurant
Ingredients
Mashed Potatoes (above)
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs, divided
oil for frying
Directions
- Chill Mashed Potatoes for a few hours (I think the reason I have a difficult time keeping the shape is because they're not cold enough - I usually only chill about 30 minutes!)
- Stir in 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- Form potatoes into about 4" patties
- Coat potato cakes with Panko Breadcrumbs
- Heat oil in deep skillet until hot
- Carefully place potato cakes in hot oil and fry on each side for about 30-60 seconds
- Place on rimmed baking sheet and bake in 350* oven until heated through (about 10-15 minutes)


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