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Potato Cakes With Mozzarella and Pesto

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“I was searching for a nice potato cake recipe when I came across this by Michael Chiarello. We LOVE mozzarella cheese in this house, and this hit the spot. This recipe might take a little bit more time than most, but the patties can be made up to a day ahead to save time on cooking day. (The pesto sauce jar is an estimate for I do not have one here now to be exact. It is just the small jar of pesto.)”

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat the oven to 450º.
  2. Bake the potatoes right on the oven rack until a bit overcooked, about 1 hour. Let sit until they can be handled.
  3. Cut potatoes in half and scoop out the flesh. (Reserve the skins for another use if desired, or toss.).
  4. Lower the oven to 250º.
  5. Pass the potatoes through a potato ricer or grate them on the large holes of a box grater. This should give you about 6 cups of potatoes.
  6. Season the potatoes with salt and pepper, and divide into 16 equal balls. Press each ball into a patty about 1/3-inch thick.
  7. Cut half of the cheese into 1/4-inch pieces. Place a piece of cheese in the middle of each of 8 patties.
  8. Cover with the remaining 8 patties and shape into smooth disks.
  9. Lightly dust the patties on both sides with flour. (Patties can be stored for 1 day at this point).
  10. Heat a 12" skillet over medium-high heat. Add 3 Tbs. of oil and heat until the oil just begins to smoke.
  11. Place 4 patties in the skillet. When you hear the patties sizzle, lower the heat to medium.
  12. Cook until brown and crispy on both sides, 10-12 minutes total. Turn only once. If the first 4 patties absorb all of the oil, just add another Tbs. or so to the skillet and cook the remaining 4 patties.
  13. Warm pesto sacue in a micro-safe bowl for about 30 sec. or until just warm.
  14. Grate the remaining mozzarella cheese.
  15. To serve: sprinkle each potato cake with grated mozzarella and place in a 250º oven until the cheese is melted, spoon pesto on top of each cake and serve immediately.

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