Kartoffelpuffern -- or potato pancakes (so much less fun to say) -- are a guilty pleasure of mine. Next to scones, they are my favorite breakfast/anytime item to make. Just the thought of crunchy, warm potato patties smothered in tangy sour cream and sweet apple sauce makes me swoon.
Recently (er, not so recently...I've been a wee bit busy lately and have fallen behind on blogging) I attended the "big dig" at Great Country Farms. It was my first potato digging experience. Well, actually, the tractor really did all the digging. It ripped up the fields and I (and dozens of kids) jumped behind the tractor, scooping up the piles of potatoes in its wake. Ryan and I left with a bag full of the freshest, best potatoes we'd ever tasted!
Thanks to my always trusty food processor, I can turn a few small potatoes and half an onion into perfectly shredded ribbons in about 3.5 seconds. From there, gather up all the potato/onion shreds into a cheesecloth or kitchen towel (even some sturdy paper towels would work) and squeeze out most of the liquid.
In a large bowl, combine the potato and onion shreds with salt, pepper, bread crumbs, and a beaten egg. I love it when the simplest ingredients produce such tasty results!
Meanwhile, heat a couple tablespoons of oil in a heavy-bottomed pan or skillet. When the oil is shiny and hot, add heaping tablespoons of the potato mixture into the pan, flatten with the back of the spoon and then cook for a couple of minutes (until the edges begin to turn golden and crispy). Heat for another 2 minutes and you're done!
I like to "accessorize" my potato pancakes the German way -- with sour cream and homemade apple sauce. They're pretty darn tasty, though, on their own.