Sunday 27 February 2011

Recipe: Breakfast stack

My boyfriend and I came across this recipe for potato cakes with wilted spinach, smoked salmon and poached egg countless times when living in Melbourne. Since coming home we’ve created our own version which we eat for brunch on lazy Sunday mornings (alright, maybe not mornings, but you get the idea).

Ingredients (serves 2):

Two small potatoes
Knob of butter
Splash of olive oil
Plain flour for dusting
Two eggs
White vinegar
Fresh spinach
Salt & Pepper
Tomato chutney to serve


1.       Put a large pan of water on the hob to boil. You can use this pan later to poach the eggs.

2.       Peel the potatoes and cut them into small chunks. Put them in the pan of water once it’s come to the boil and cook for 8 - 10 minutes.

3.       Drain the potatoes, add the knob of butter, salt and pepper, and mash thoroughly until they come together in the pan.

4.       Pre heat a large frying pan on a medium heat with a splash of oil (about a teaspoon).

5.       Divide the mash into two halves and form into a patty/burger shape with your (clean) hands.

6.       Dust the potato patties in the flour, this ensures a crispy crust to your potato cake.

7.       Put the dusted potato cakes into the pan and cook for approx 4-5 minutes each side. Be careful not to rip off the crispy outside when turning them halfway.

8.       Meanwhile, rinse the pan you used to cook the potatoes and fill with fresh boiling water. Return to the heat and bring to a gentle simmer with a steady stream of bubbles rising from the bottom of the pan.  Begin your first poached egg at the point that you turn the potato cakes over.

9.       Add a glug of vinegar to the simmering water (approx 2 tablespoons), stir the water into a whirlpool and gently break the first egg into its centre. The eggs take 3-4 minutes each – it’s best to do them one at a time so that they don’t bump into each other in the water.

10.   Whilst the poached eggs are cooking, rest a colander over the pan to act as a steamer for your spinach. Add the spinach and leave over the simmering water until wilted.

11.   Remove your first poached egg after 4-5 minutes and repeat the process for the second .

12.   Layer up the potato cake, spinach, salmon and poached egg on plates. We like to put a cut into the egg so that it oozes down the stack, sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve with tomato chutney. You can also serve with hollandaise sauce or a wedge of lemon.

Photography by Gareth Reid -

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