Fare With A Flair: Leftovers ideal for breakfast potato cakes

By Staff

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St. Patrick’s Day is tomorrow and I have a new appreciation of all things Irish after having spent two wonderful weeks in the west coast of the Emerald Isle last summer.

The Irish love of potatoes is no secret. During my stay I managed to try many new varieties of the humble spud.

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My recipe today is inspired by a dish I had in a pub in Killarney on a very cold and rainy day in July!

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The version I enjoyed in the pub was a deep-fried potato cake served with a rich mushroom sauce. My recipe below skips the deep frying and offers a simpler pan-fried version.

This recipe is ideal to make when you have some leftover mashed potatoes. If you don’t want to fuss with the mushroom sauce, consider making the potato cakes to accompany some sausage for breakfast.

Potato cakes with bacon and mushroom sauce

(Makes 6 )

3 cups (750 ml) mashed potatoes

1/4 cup (50 ml) chopped cooked bacon

2 green onions chopped

1 egg

1/2 tsp. (2 ml) salt

1/2 cup (125 ml) all-purpose flour

2 Tbsp. (25 ml) butter

2 Tbsp. (25 ml) vegetable oil


1. Combine mashed potatoes, bacon, green onions, egg, salt and flour in a bowl.

2. Mix well. If the mixture is too wet, add a few more spoonfuls of flour

3. Divide mixture into six balls.

4. Sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of flour evenly on a plate. Press each ball into a patty on the flour dusted plate. Flip over and dredge the other side lightly with flour.

5. Heat half of the butter and oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.

6. Place potato cakes in the pan and cook for 4-5 minutes until deep golden.

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7. Add remaining butter and oil and flip potato cakes and cook on the other side.

8. Serve with the mushroom sauce.

Mushroom sauce

2 Tbsp. (25 ml) butter

1 small onion, diced

2 cups (500 ml) sliced mushrooms

1 Tbsp.(15 ml) flour

1/2 tsp. (2 ml) chopped thyme

1-1/2 (375 ml) cups milk


1. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.

2. Stir in onions and mushrooms and cook until soft.

3. Add flour and thyme and continue to stir for about a minute. This will be quite dry.

4. Slowly whisk in milk and continue to cook, whisking constantly until smooth and thick.

5. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If sauce becomes too thick, add a few more spoonfuls of milk.

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