Recipes, Vegetarian

Pan-fried potato cakes were created by the Swiss as part of their breakfast, where the dish is referred to as a ‘rösti’. They are popular all over the world and the Americans call them ‘hash browns’. Put simply, they are made from grated potatoes, and are pan-fried until golden brown and crunchy. This is not a main meal but rather a side dish to something else that you’re going to braai, say for example a steak.


  • 1 onion (peeled)
  • 4 medium potatoes (if you like peeling potatoes, peel them; but if you’re similar to me and don’t like peeling potatoes, don’t)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1 tot olive oil
  • 1 tot butter


  1. Grate the onion and potatoes with the coarse side of your grater and toss them into a mixing bowl. Add the salt and pepper and mix well.
  2. In a flat-bottomed cast-iron pot or flameproof pan over a medium-hot fire, heat the oil and butter together. Then put the rösti mixture into the pan, using an egg lifter or a spatula to flatten each rösti by putting some pressure on it. You can either make one big rösti at a time that fills the whole pan, or make a few smaller röstis together in the pan. The latter option is easier, as one big rösti sometimes breaks when you turn it. Whichever route you go, the rösti should be about 1 cm thick. Fry until golden brown on both sides, which should take about 3–5 minutes a side over medium heat.
  3. Remove from the pan. If you made smaller röstis, they can be served whole, and if you made bigger röstis you can slice them