Hi all! Sorry I’ve been absent from blogging lately. It’s been so busy there hasn’t been time for me to concentrate on writing in a while. We moved to Helsinki with S, had to arrange our things after moving in, I started a new job, had a big party for my 30th birthday (was a couple of weeks ago already, but as most of my friends live in Helsinki I only got to celebrate it now)… So many things have been going on and taking my time. Fortunately it’s weekend and a chance to rest a little bit from all the hustle.
My party last night went great, and I baked things there too: wonderful, sticky and sweet Snickers brownies and a creamy apple cheesecake with oatmeal crisps on top. The thing is, that S only arrived to our new place yesterday, and brought the camera with him, so I didn’t have time to photograph the stuff before rushing to the party place. But I made the brownies with my favorite brownie recipe, doubling the amount of the ingredients. They became just perfectly thick in a rectangular brownie pan. The apple cheesecake recipe I made up by accident, as I was supposed to bake something totally different, which completely failed, and I had to come up with something to save the thing. The result was luckily good.
Anyway, last time I blogged I mentioned about the massive amount of potatoes we had stored in our fridge and that had to be used. One totally new thing for me, when I lived in Brazil, was what they called Batata Suíça, a Swiss potato. I know and have eaten rösti, a Swiss potato cake made of grated potato in a frying pan, but its Brazilian cousin was something different. I thought it was divine. Yes it was a similar fried potato cake, but it was always filled with cheese and different kinds of other fillings. Typical examples were for example finely chopped chicken, dried meat (which the Brazilians seem to love…actually they love all meat), fresh rocket, sun-dried tomatoes, shrimps, herbs, even stroganoff…you name it. The only thing that a Batata Suíça always has is requeijão, a creamy cheese that is not cream cheese. Here in Finland we call the similar product melted cheese, which it really resembles. After some googling I found out that an American equivalent could be processed cheese in a liquid form, or some kind of a cheese spread. If you can find these products on your local store, you should give this dish a try. The Brazilians don’t go crazy for this for no reason!
The recipe (in Portuguese) is adapted from a great Brazilian food site Tudo Gostoso (everything delicious).
Swiss Potato in a Brazilian Style
1kg big firm potatoes
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
200g requeijão/cheese spread/processed cheese (choose the one with most fat)
125g fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
Bring water to a boil in a double boiler or regular large saucepan. Wash the potatoes and boil them semi-soft. Test it with a fork, the potatoes need to have some bite in them, otherwise the next step will be very difficult to do. Also, the larger your potatoes, the easier the grating.
Let the potatoes to cool in a room temperature. When cooled, place them in a freezer for about 10 minutes. Take the potatoes out of the freezer, peel and roughly grate them. Season with salt and black pepper.
Melt the butter on a medium size skillet over medium heat. With moist hands, press half of the shredded potato on the bottom of the skillet. Spoon the cheese spread on top, leaving it about 2cm from the edges to prevent it from trickling out. Spread the sliced mozzarella evenly over the melt cheese and top with the rest of the shredded potato. Wet your hands in water if spreading the potatoes is difficult.
Fry the potato cake from both sides until it’s golden brown and crispy on each side. Keep the skillet covered between the flips. The easiest to flip the swiss potato over on a skillet is by using a plate to help.
Let the potato cake to set for 5 minutes before serving.
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