Monday, August 31, 2009

Potato Cheese Patties

Summer seems to be the time for get-togethers, an excuse for spending long afternoons clustered around a table that is groaning with food and drink and noshing with abandon.

I made these little cheese-filled morsels earlier this summer and we made a big batch again yesterday to take to a party. The patties disappeared in minutes (late arrivals to the party were met with an empty platter) and since this is such a crowd-pleaser, I wanted to jot down the recipe here for my own future reference.

The recipe calls for a liberal use of many spices, because I wanted the patties to be tasty enough on their own, without a chutney or dipping sauce, and I wanted them to taste good even at room temperature.

The hardest part was answering the question, "what are these?"- V and I mumbled something like "they are know, with potatoes and herbs and cheese". Call them patties or croquettes or tikkis or "things", people are happy to eat them and that's all that matters sometimes. The recipe below made 24 patties, each about the size of my palm.

Potato Cheese Patties


1. Boil about 10 medium potaoes. When cool enough to handle, peel and mash the potatoes.

2. Heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a large, heavy skillet and saute 1 large onion, minced fine, until golden.

3. Add 3 shredded medium carrots and 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste and saute well.

4. Add turmeric, red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and Kitchen King masala and salt (all to taste but be sure to add enough to season the bland potatoes that will be added later). Saute for a minute more and turn off the heat.

5. When this mixture cools, stir in the mashed potato, large handfuls of minced cilantro and fresh mint, a teaspoon or less of sugar and chaat masala to taste. Knead the mixture gently to mix well and taste it. Adjust seasonings if necessary.

6. Shred 1 cup Pepper Jack cheese and 1 cup cheddar cheese and mix them together to make the filling.

7. Divide the potato mixture into 24 portions. Pat each portion into a disc, fill with some cheese and pinch the edges together to make a stuffed patty. Shallow fry the patties using a few drops of oil. Don't worry if some cheese leaks out of an occasional patty, it will crisp up in the hot pan and seal the leak. The cook gets to eat the leaky patties ;)

*** *** ***

The Print Lover gave me a sweet award (thank you!) and tagged me for a meme. The meme had a lot of questions about fashion and style and these things are not my forte (to put it very very mildly) so I'm just answering a few of the questions here...

1. What is your current obsession?
Knitting socks. I just made my first pair (Fall colors!) and I am smitten. I was warned that sock knitting is addictive and that seems about right.

Pattern: Wise Hilda's Basic Ribbed Sock.

3. What’s for dinner?
Spaghetti squash with sauteed onions, red peppers and kidney beans, topped with a dollop of sour cream and habanero-lime salsa. I was inspired by this recipe.

6. What do you think about the person who tagged you?
I'm glad she delurked!

7. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
In a liberal, eco-friendly, walking-friendly, dog-friendly community- anywhere in the world.

16. What’s your favorite magazine?
The New Yorker

17. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?
KnitPicks yarn

20. Describe your personal style.
Shabby Chic. OK- Much Shabby with just a hint of chic.

22. What are your favorite movies?
Documentaries. Two memorable ones are Mad Hot Ballroom and Born Into Brothels. I'd love to hear your recommendations for good documentaries.

28. What is the meaning of your name?
Nupur means "ankle jewelry" in several Indian languages. In particular, it often means ghungroo or the bells worn by Indian classical dancers on their ankles. Click here to see a picture of these beautiful metal bells and here is a picture of a dancer wearing them. In keeping with my name, I did learn Indian classical dance (kathak) for 10+ years as a child. Dance is my favorite art form. About my name, people seem to either love it or think it is very outlandish. I love it :)

29. Which other blogs you love visiting?
I read hundreds of food blog and like visiting them all, but I'll mention three non-food blogs that I enjoy reading- The Happiness Project, Zen Habits and Kamini's wonderful blog, Tales of South India.

Can you believe September is only hours away? I'll see you in a week or so!


  1. Those patties look delicious and easy enough to make. I'm going to make them for my son's b'day this month. I'm sure everybody'll love them, will let you know.

  2. Nupur, Thanks for doing the tag!

    I liked the story behind your name :)

  3. patties look delicious and easy Nupur

  4. Those patties look wonderful. I am sick and tired of my same old pakoras and dhoklas for appetizers for potluck parties, will try this one next time. Thanks!

  5. Nupur,
    The patties look so appetizing and more so, easy to prepare. I am hosting this yrs Diwali party and this is on the menu, thanks!
    I absolutely loved your choice of place to live, could I be your neighbor? I am not a great cook, but could pet sit Dale :)

  6. Fabulous way to prepare these patties! They are similar to latkes, but I must say I love the addition of the spices... would make them so tasty any time of year!

  7. These patties sound like cutlets and Iam already thinking of these topped with dahi and pani... swweeet and spicy and!!
    nice post ..i did enjoy reading it..during my life I havent enjoyed craft. When I was supposed to make a shawl I ended up making a shawl looking like a table cloth. This happened when I was a teenager. After seeing many blog creations I have had a desire to try out how do I start knitting Nupur? Do you have any suggestions?

  8. wow!! thats a lovely idea. I gonna try it now!!

    Socks also look gorgeous!

  9. What a wonderful way to make the plain old tikki into something so tasty! :-)
    Loved the idea of stuffing cheese.

  10. cheese and potato, addictive! i haven't seen pepper jack cheese in singapore. been lookin around ever since i saw some people substituting it for mozarella in pizzas.

  11. Call them by any name, these lil' "things" are promisingly delicious!

    You are a big time knitting expert, Nupur! Great going!

  12. yummy... and this was another nice meme :)

    I love those socks! Also, I learnt bharatanatyam for 10-11 years. :)

  13. oh!! potato pattie just got totally sexy!! imagine cheese filled patties!! yummm! love the colours of the socks...

  14. Hi Nupur,

    The last time you mentioned that you added bread to the patties. Cannot seem to find that step in this recipe though. At which stage did u add it?

  15. Nice combo ..looks gud...need to see where can get that cheese here in SG!...Congrats on your award

  16. lovely patties, and the socks have a lovely colour, and liked your meme too.., teach me how to knit long back i did some crafts making some flowers, drawing & painting and some crochet (did i spell it properly !)... patties look great

  17. Patties looks so gorgeous..what better combination than potato and cheese!

  18. Pavani- Your son's birthday party- how exciting! I hope this recipe works well for you.

    The Print Lover- It is fun to do memes once in a while :)

    Vidhya- Thanks!

    Rashmi- Yes, it is always fun to play with the menu a little.

    Namita- Why, I hope you will move in right next door!!
    Good luck with your Diwali and I'd love to hear if the recipe works for you :)

    Patsyk- You are right, they are very similar to latkes!

    BDSN- I tried to learn knitting years ago and hated it, so I do believe it is a matter of picking it up again when the time is right. There are many ways to learn knitting- taking classes, books, online videos, websites. You can start with a small project and build up confidence slowly. Please e-mail me if you would list a list of specific resources.

    chakhlere- Thanks :)

    Sharmila- Plain old tikkis are very tasty too :) this is just a variation on the theme.

    Nags- You can use any melting cheese that is available to you.

    Musical- They were so delicious, I wish I had saved some more for myself ;)
    Knitting expert- hah. I wish :) am just enjoying my small do-able projects.

    Raaga- Well, pick up the meme and do it too- I'd love to hear your responses! So you learned dance too? Are you still going to classes? If only I had a teacher nearby, I would love to continue my Kathak lessons.

    arundati- LOL thank you!

    Shilpa- I add bread sometimes to these type of patties, either when I have leftover bread that I am trying to use up, or when the mixture needs a little help to hold together well. This time, the potatoes were sticky enough so I skipped the bread. You can add it in step 5 if you wish too.

    Priti- Please feel free to use any cheese that is locally available to you.

    jayasri and Parita- Thanks!

  19. Wow, thanks Nupur for your warm words. I am so honored - coming from you, they mean so much!
    Love the patties, will definitely give them a try soon. And the socks - I simply cannot believe that they are your first pair - they look professionally made, and so toasty and cozy! Bravo!
    Thanks again. This spurs me to keep writing!

  20. Mmmm, I want these now! Luckily we have a garden shed full of homegrown potatoes, so maybe I can make them for supper...

  21. The potato patties look yummy, will surely try them.
    I liked the knitted socks that u made,I like to knit too but with 2 kids(5 yrs and 2 yrs) I hardly get any time to do that , but I still managed to knit a sweater, booties and hoody for my son when he was born, now he is 5 years old:)

  22. I just had to de-lurk and say:
    Love the socks!

  23. Wow, mouthwatering patties!

    Congratulations for the award!

  24. ooh- yum! I am making these today! But I don't have mint at hand and not much cilantro either- so I am going to try it with basil, lemon basil and some cilantro. Hopefully won't be too bad? Also planning to use comte and gruyere cheese. Will let you know how it turns out..*fingers crossed*. I need me some comfort food..:)

  25. This looks the idea of adding cheese..I have been through your blog before and must say that I am a fan of your blog.

  26. Nupur.. How are you ? Its been a while since I dropped in to say Hi , a bit out of the circuit due to the newborn.. I tried these patties yday..but used them in a sandwich so I cut back on the masala and used a habanero ketchup. They were awesome !! Thanks for the wonderful recipe . reminded me of my mom's sandwich treats for lunch box , with leftover potato pasty curry and amul cheese .. made in the sandwich makers we use in India. which we fold and warm

  27. Great recipe, Nupur!And great socks!My first knitting exp did not turn out as great:(But hey that relaxes me!

  28. Delicious looking patties! Can't wait to try. Thanks for posting the recipe!

  29. Love the patties and love the socks!! Enjoy your blog :)
    A great documentary-style movie is "No man's land" about the war in Bosnia/Serbia. A must see.
    A great documentary is "Blindsight" about 6 blind kids who attempt to climb Lhakpa Ri -- incredible!

  30. nupur,
    do u have more of spinach recipes? Is there any link in your blog for all of palak recipes. i mean its round up something like that?
    because your A to Z of marathi food was very good.

  31. Hi Nupur,
    I've visited your blog on and off for years and tried many of your recipes with great sucess - but via another blogger (vadani kaval gheta) I heard that you are also knitting, and came by to see any pics - the scarf and socks are gorgeous! Hope to see much more knitting in these pages..

  32. I've no doubt your guests were delighted! These wouldn't last long in my house either! I love spicy treats like this.

  33. Nupur was one of my top ten choices for my lil girls name when we were looking :) hubby overruled on grounds that it sounded too North Indian! men - huh!!


  34. Nupur is really a lovely name...those socks are're knitting is amazing, i remember one post with a whole lot of your knitting...And the patties - potato and cheese - what mroe can u ask yumminess

  35. The patties look totally delectable!! I have seen Kitchen King Masala so often but never really thought of using it in my cooking. But I saw that name feature a few times in your blog and I felt it deserved a fair chance :)

    And now I'm totally addicted to it, be it in north indian gravies, paratha fillings and what not!! I can't live without it in my masala shelf.

  36. Kamini- Your words are lyrical and I am in awe of your rich writing! You can tell I am a fan :) Please do keep writing.

    Jenni- It should be extra-special with home grown potatoes.

    Mayuri- How nice that you like knitting too!

    Pooja- Thanks!

    Bhavna- Thank you.

    Lavanya- Any herbs and any cheese will do just fine, I think. This is an infinitely adaptable recipe. How did it turn out?

    Mansi- Thank you so much!

    Dee- Congratulations on your little one! Your version sounds wonderful, and yes, I LOVE those toasted sandwiches- with dollops of ketchup :)

    Shri- I agree, it is a very relaxing hobby and that's what is important!

    John- Thanks!

    ceilithe- Thank you so much for the recommendations, I am going to look for those documentaries!

    cookerybook- No, sorry, I don't.

    Desiknitter- Thank you :) I'm restricting the knitting to Ravelry as much as I can though!

    Lisa- I love such spicy treats too, I could make a meal of them :)

    Miri- LOL Now that I think about it, I don't know any South Indian Nupurs!

    Arch- Thank you :) My mother picked the name long before I was born.

    Preeti- I learned of Kitchen King masala from other blogs too, and quickly loved it :) Glad you tried and liked it too.

  37. Nupur- It turned out great! I added a little bit of pav bhaji masala too - it was sort of a mix and taste This recipe is a definite keeper!!! The next day I broke the patties to stuff between bread- then warmed the bread in the microwave, so the cheese melted and was so yummy.

    I was so tempted to stuff some patties with chocolate instead of cheese but totally forgot, much to my husband's relief..:)

  38. Also, I loved the lemon basil with the potatoes- it served a similar purpose as the mint would have, I guess- sort of 'brightening' the flavors

  39. Hi, this is a really cool post - thanks. Great blog too - loads of interesting things here.

  40. Great idea for a potluck. Thanks. I'm going to make these for my CSA potluck.

  41. Nupur,

    Thanks for a great tasting yet simple and easy recipe.

    I've tried this a couple of times and was a hit both times.

    The best part is, the recipe holds well on experimentation with the ingredients, I added some chopped green bell peppers and coated lightly with home-made bread crumbs, worked out fine.

  42. I love Indian cuisine, but I'm not entirely familiar with the spice ratios when cooking. I tasted (read: stumbled) my way through this recipe - to success, but it would be so helpful if you provided spice measurements. It'll certainly help people like me calibrate my palette to spice/taste ratios. Otherwise, great recipe. Love it!

    1. I'm very glad you were able to make the recipe work for you! This is one of the very few recipes on my blog that don't have spice measurements and the reason is that I did not measure the spices but just estimated them as I went along. I'll have to work on this one and add spice amounts.
      Feel free to look at other recipes on my blog and e-mail me if you have any questions. Happy Indian Cooking :)

  43. Hi Nupur..hope u keeping well.I was thinkin of making this for a crowd of 15 + for my xmas party this year. In order to reduce my workload on the D- day , would i be able to make it a few days in advance and freeze the patties? would I need to partially fry them first before freezin so that the patties dont stick to each other? Look forward to your reply .Thanks very much

    1. Sarah- I have made frozen patties but they were not stuffed with cheese. Yes, I partially fried them before freezing. Details are in this post:

      I would suggest doing a trial run. Make a few patties and freeze them for a couple of days and see how reheating works for you. Then you'll be more at peace making them in advance for a big crowd. Let us know how it works for ya!

  44. Nupur- thanks so much for getting back to me and for the link to your other post, it's v helpful. will def do a trial run like u said ..too many trial runs goin on in my kitchen now :)), Tried your pizza this weekend and it was good , thanks for that. The only thing was , the crust got a bit soggy , which is totally my fault. You did warn about reducing the sauce well . :) anyway i'l let you know how this turns out. thanks so very much!


The spammers are out in full force so I've had to turn word verification on! Thanks for leaving a comment- I read and respond to every single one.