Make Ahead

Yukon Gold Pancakes with Yogurt-Cream Sauce

November 20, 2010
2 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

My love for the scent and taste of nutmeg in an Alfredo sauce inspired me to flavor these potato pancakes. The light interior keeps together with a little potato starch in place of egg, panko in the place of flour and a bit of heavy cream; they have a definite mild burst of leek, nutmeg and carrot, for its sweetness and color.

The starchy Yukon Gold is ideal for crispiness; the shredded potato is squeezed of excess moisture, the pancakes are formed small - around 3 inches, and they are fried only after the oil is ready in a skillet that retains heat well. I like to add a pat of butter to the oil because; after all, what's Alfredo without the taste of butter! The exterior is golden brown with a darker, crunchy, jagged edge and then sprinkled with Parmigiano Reggiano right after they come off the heat.

A yogurt-cream sauce, in place of sour cream, is seasoned to compliment the pancakes. A lively addition to any meal, these can be cooked ahead, cooled and then reheated in a warm oven, but are better when served immediately. – lapadia —lapadia

Test Kitchen Notes

These lovely little potato pancakes are light, flavorful and downright tasty. We particularly like how the mild flavors of the leek and grated carrot don’t overwhelm the Yukon Golds. Lapadia’s clever technique of using the collected potato starch as a binder, instead of egg, prevents the pancakes from being too heavy. Crispy on the outside, soft and fragrant on the inside, then topped with a bit of cheese and a touch of tangy yogurt, these are simply delightful. I made two batches, substituting potato flakes for the panko in the second, to create a wheat-free version, which worked well. Great recipe!! ;o) —AntoniaJames

What You'll Need
  • 1 pound (about 3 large) Yukon Gold potatoes – peeled, grated
  • 2 tablespoons potato starch (residue left after soaking and draining the potato water)
  • 2 cups combined - finely chopped leeks and shredded carrots
  • 3 tablespoons heavy whip cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper (or cayenne or an extra kick)
  • 1/4 cup panko (or less, judged by feeling for a mixture that holds loosely together)
  • Safflower oil (or cannola)
  • Pats of unsalted butter
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano, fresh micro plane grated - for sprinkling on top
  • 1/2 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoon heavy whip cream
  • Fresh ground Nutmeg – to taste
  • White pepper – to taste (or cayenne for an extra kick)
  2. Wash & peel the potatoes, shred them with the big holes of a box grater, let sit in a bowl of ice cold water to keep from browning while preparing other ingredients.
  3. Slice the white and tender green of leeks and chop finely. Shred a carrot; combine with the chopped leeks to make 2 cups – set aside until needed.
  4. Do not discard the potato water, yet, but do squeeze as much water as possible from the shredded potatoes by twisting in a clean thin dish towel or by using a potato ricer – my favorite way to do this. Place the squeezed potatoes in a large bowl.
  5. Pour out the potato water collecting 2 tablespoons of the starchy residue found at the bottom; whisk the cream and starch together - toss into the shredded potatoes.
  6. Add in the leeks, carrots, nutmeg, salt, pepper and 2 tablespoons (half) the panko; toss and feel for a mixture that holds together - loosely...add more panko if needed, but you shouldn't need to.
  7. Cook the pancakes in batches; heat oil & a pat of butter, 1/4-inch depth, in a large skillet. Then, leaving the edges jagged, drop 3 inch circles of the potato mixture into the hot oil. Lightly flatten with a fork for even thickness, but, be careful - flattening too hard will result in a dense pancake.
  8. Brown on one side and then turn and brown on the other side. Add more oil and a pat of butter as necessary to maintain depth, be sure to let the extra oil get hot before continuing.
  9. After each batch of pancakes have cooked, place them in single layer on a baking sheet lined with paper towels to drain. Place the baking sheet into an oven heated on a low temperature to keep warm.
  10. Immediately sprinkle each batch with Parmigiano-Reggiano.
  11. Serve warm, garnished with the yogurt-cream sauce below.
  2. Mix all the ingredients together. Refrigerate until needed.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Bevi
  • boulangere
  • wssmom
  • gingerroot
  • drbabs

13 Reviews

Bevi November 12, 2013
These sound lovely. They have a place on my table this holiday!
lapadia November 12, 2013
boulangere May 25, 2011
These got past me. LOVE potato pancakes.
boulangere May 25, 2011
Oh my goodness, and just read the rest of the ingredients. SO have to try these.
lapadia May 26, 2011
Hi boulangere, Do let me know if/when you try these, would appreciate your feedback! Hmmm, you wondered how these got past you...I am thinking, maybe you weren't on Food52 yet? :)
wssmom May 25, 2011
Oh, these sound tremendous!!!!
lapadia May 26, 2011
Thanks, wssmom! Hope you try them soon and don't forget to let me know!
gingerroot November 22, 2010
I love Yukons, and these sound delicious! Also love your use of potato starch-cream to bind instead of eggs. Thanks for a great looking recipe.
lapadia November 28, 2010
Thanks gingerroot, your recipe sounds delicious too!
Gale November 22, 2010
Really like the use of leeks and carrots for their flavor and color, but especially the lack of an egg and using the potato starch and panko to bind. And the yogurt cream sauce is so much better than sour cream. Couldn't get these done fast enough for everyone. Best of luck.
lapadia November 22, 2010
Thanks, Gale, glad these worked out for you, and Happy Thanksgiving!
drbabs November 21, 2010
Interesting combination of flavors, lapadia!
lapadia November 21, 2010
Thanks for checking it out, drbabs!...good luck in the finals, I hope to try your recipe before the end of the year.