Fried spring onion filled potato pancakes are served in this vegan main topped with steamed spinach and smashed roasted garlic cloves, topped with crispy fried tofu matchsticks and stir fried onion. A lot less complicated than it sounds, it makes a filling meal for two (um, and you get to play with mashed potato with your hands. Hello, fun)!
I challenge anyone to turn up their noses at any dish making use of the creamy subtle taste of oven roasted garlic. And, well, if you do then that’s fine too because it’s more for me. To me, garlic is one of life’s greatest pleasures, as is spinach. Potato too. I’m a big fan of tofu to boot. Who am I kidding? I just like to eat.
Remember: if I can manage a recipe without wearing more than 10% of its ingredients by the time step one commences, then it’s likely doable by most other folks too. Translation? This is doable by all of you, despite the long list of steps.
Okay, so I get paranoid regarding whether or not I’ve made instructions understandable. If I haven’t scold me. If I have, and you’ve been successful, tell me what you think. Tell me what you think even if you don’t try it. Tell me a story.
Potato starch may not be part of your kitchen pantry repetoire, but I recommend it highly. It’s one of my favourite starches for frying because its texture can be both crispy and gooey at the same time. Alas, if you don’t have it then corn flour should be okay too. You don’t exactly need to coat the potato in anything before frying it, so don’t sweat the small stuff like that. I just like the texture, but many potato pancakes have been thrown on a skillet in this world, sans starch.
Potato Pancakes with Garlicky Smashed Spinach
- First put your oven on 200 C (400 F) to roast the garlic. Peel away as much of the outer skin as possible from an entire bulb of garlic, cut 1/8-1/4 inch off the top so the garlic is just peeping out, coat in oil, and pop the oven for 20-30 minutes, or until the garlic is soft.
- Meanwhile peel and cut the potatoes in large dice. Boil until a knife can be inserted with ease, drain, and place in a medium bowl along with the milk, nutritional yeast, 1/2 tsp salt, and spring onion. Mash well.
- Get out two small plates. On one pour the tamari and worcestershire sauces. On the other, spread out the 2 tbsp potato starch. Put the tofu matchsticks on the plate with the sauces, turning to coat until all of the liquid is soaked in.
- Heat plenty of oil in a large skillet. Form the now cooled mashed potato into four balls of moderately equal size and press into 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch thick patties. Coat each side lightly in the potato starch and place on the skillet to fry on each side for a few minutes, or until crispy and brown.
- While the pancakes are cooking, steam the spinach in a pot with a tablespoon or so of water, adding extra handfuls as it cooks down. When the spinach is cooked, drain it and press as much liquid out as possible. Return it to the pot along with the butter and any extra salt you desire. Squeeze the roasted garlic cloves out of their skins and mash into the spinach slightly. Keep on low heat.
- Test your multi-tasking skills some more! Quickly roll the tofu in the rest of the starch, to coat. If there’s room in the pan with the potato pancakes, fry them in there (keep them slightly separated because the potato starch will make them stick together). Otherwise, fry them quickly after the potato is finished cooking. They only need to be fried for a minute or two, until justy brown and crispy.
- Cut the onion in half and into wedges and stir fry on high heat for a few minutes. Add an extra splash of tamari for flavour, if desired.
- Serve the potato pancakes topped with the spinach. Spoon the onions over and lay the tofu over/beside/however. Serve immediately.