Considered a national dish in Switzerland, rösti [reursch ti] is a potato dish that is a cross between hash browns and a potato pancake. Crisp on the outside, soft and meltingly potato-ey within, it was originally a breakfast dish eaten by farmers in the canton of Bern but is now popular throughout Switzerland and around the world. Rather than being served only for breakfast, rösti is now more commonly served to accompany other dishes as a replacement for the standard side dish for that meal.
Rösti | Swiss Potato Pancakes
- 4 medium-sized yellow or gold potatoes
- ½ to ¾ cup chopped shallots 10 to 12 small or onion
- Pinch salt
- Pinch pepper
- 2 Tbsp. bacon fat divided
- 2 Tbsp. butter divided
- Parboil the potatoes in salted water until fork-tender. Allow to cool; refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Just before frying, coarsely grate potatoes in a large-hole grater into a medium bowl. Add shallots, salt, and pepper; toss gently to combine.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat and 1 tablespoon of the butter in an 8-inch nonstick or cast-iron skillet until sizzling. Add potato mixture; gently press with a spatula, shaping it into a thick pancake. Cover the skillet and cook for about 20 minutes until the sides are golden brown, gently shaking the skillet occasionally to loosen the rösti.
- Remove the skillet cover. Place a plate on top of the skillet and, holding on to both the plate and the skillet, invert the rösti onto the plate, cooked-side up. Add the remaining bacon fat and butter to the skillet and, when sizzling, slide the rösti back into the skillet, cooked-side up; reshape if necessary. Cover the skillet and cook for about 20 minutes until golden brown on the bottom and crisp on the sides, pressing down on the rösti once or twice with the spatula to make the potatoes stick together. Remove the cover at least 5 minutes before the end of cooking so your rösti crisps on the outside.
- Slide the rösti onto a plate and cut it into wedges. Serve hot with ham, sausages, or crisp-fried bacon; fried eggs; and more butter. Or serve topped with smoked salmon, sour cream, and chives.