I hope you’re all having a wonderful Easter weekend. I stuffed myself silly this Easter, as I have every Easter. I think it might just be my favourite holiday. It’s like Christmas minus the stress of picking out presents.
So, in my last post I told you how weird I am with fruits. Get this, I’m weird with vegetables too. Say whaaat?? Kinda makes sense if you think about it.
I have a liiiiiiiittle tiny bit of Botanophobia (self diagnosed of course). Basically, Botanophobia is the fear of plants. *cough*weirdo!*cough* I don’t know where it came from but I’ve never felt comfortable around plants for as long as I can remember. I don’t have any recollection of any bad experiences involving plants; The only thing I can think of is how my grandmother used to tell me, when I was a kid, to not walk on the grass barefooted because the worms might burrow their way into my feet. To this day, I still can’t go barefoot on grass.
I do eat my veggies though. Unlike fruits, I would pretty much eat any kinds of vegetables. What I can’t do, or rather have an intense dislike for, is handling them. While I’m very happy to eat a salad, I can’t bring myself to wash lettuce. I would not, however, eat a salad without washing it first. That’s why we hardly eat salad at home. The same goes for spinach or any leafy vegetables really. What I absolutely detest THE MOST though, is handling potatoes. I can’t explain it. It just feels so weird and gross in my hands. And if they’ve already sprouted, gloves baby! Once they’re peeled and washed though, it’s all good. Told ya I’m weird.
My love for food, however, is stronger than my “fear” of spuds. Perkedel was my favourite favouritest dish whenever we were visiting my dad in Indonesia. Everytime I eat it, I’m just reminded of those carefree happy days when I was the pampered princess. I still remember how my aunt would tell the maids to add extra onions in the Perkedels for me so they’d be extra tasty. Good times.
Now that the princess is all grown up and wears an apron instead of a gown, I hardly ever make them. Not that they’re difficult to make; they’re in fact extremely easy to make. I don’t make them much because 1.) I don’t like peeling potatoes, 2.) I don’t like deep frying food at home. This week though, I caved. I did both. Sorta. I still couldn’t bring myself to pour out an entire bottle of oil into the pan so It was kind of a deep shallow fry, if you know what I mean. Hence the ring around each patty where it didn’t fry as much. After about 2 minutes of self loathing though, it was so totally worth it. These babies are awesome.
The great thing about Perkedel is that it is an extremely versatile and flexible dish. You can add pretty much anything you like to it and it will still turn out awesome. I always always make it with minced beef though because that’s how I used to have it and that’s how I’ll always have it. Unfortunately, I don’t have an exact recipe for you this time. It’s one of those dishes which ingredients you eyeball and you taste and adjust as you go.
Traditionally, the potatoes are fried before they’re mashed but I steamed mine because I really didn’t want to double my guilt. They still came out tasting just like how I remember them, which is awesomely delicious! I hope you give it a try and come up with your very own version of Perkedel.
Perkedel Kentang (Indonesian Potato Patties)
Makes 6 – 8
INGREDIENTS (measurements are given in estimation)
- 3 large potatoes
- ½ cup minced beef
- 2 shallots, chopped finely
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- coriander leaves, sliced finely
- green onions, sliced finely
- 1 large egg, separated
- white pepper
- ground coriander
- Wash and peel the potatoes. Steam for 20 mins or until cooked.
- In the meantime, heat 1 Tbsp of oil in a medium frying pan. Sauté the shallots and garlic until fragrant and add the beef. Brown the meat well, making sure you break up any clumps.
- Season with salt, pepper and ground coriander. Set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, mash the potatoes well.
- Add the beef, egg yolk, however much coriander leaves and green onions you like and season with salt, pepper and more ground coriander if you like. Mix well.
- Shape the mixture into golf ball sized balls and press down lightly to flatten just a bit. Smooth out the sides so there are no “cracks”
- In a pan, heat up about 1-3 cm of oil (depending on how willing you are to use that much oil). Heat until it bubbles when a wooden chopstick/toothpick/spoon is inserted.
- Coat the patties in egg white and gently drop them into the hot oil. Turning occasionally, fry the patties until golden brown. Drain and serve hot with chilli sauce. Enjoy!