Sweet potato cake with lime and avocado

A recipe from The New Vegetarian by Alice Hart

Listen! Know what that sound is? It’s birdsong. We have broken through into spring and we are allowed outside once more! *Tapdances* *Realises it’s not actually a heatwave yet* *Sulks* It’s this good-ish sort of weather (rain notwithstanding) that makes us want to attempt a long weekend brunch outside, on the balcony (with jumpers, but still) or at the very least with the window open. This potato cake recipe from The New Vegetarian by Alice Hart (Square Peg, £25) is fresh and zingy and all things springy.

Make it in a 23cm diameter frying pan if you don’t have the mini versions and divide into quarters to serve. You can fold three lightly beaten eggs into the sweet potato mixture, though those cakes will be frittata-esque in style and suit a poached egg balanced on top (with the avocado, of course, and extra hot sauce).

Ingredients: 

Serves 4
3 medium sweet potatoes (about 600g), peeled and coarsely grated
1 small red onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 thumb of ginger, peeled and finely grated
2 tbsp cornflour
2 tbsp brown rice flour
2 red chillies, 1 finely chopped and 1 finely sliced
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Large handful of coriander leaves, roughly chopped
6 tbsp olive oil or coconut butter, melted
2 ripe avocados, halved and pitted
2 limes, 1 juiced and 1 quartered

Process:

  1. Using a colander held under a cool tap, rinse the grated sweet potatoes until the water runs mostly clear. Squeeze the rinsed gratings in a clean tea towel to remove excess water, then tip them into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, both flours, the chopped chilli, seasoning, about 1 tbsp of the coriander and 2 tbsp of the oil or melted coconut butter and mix everything well.
  3. Divide the remaining oil or coconut butter between 4 x 15cm diameter cast-iron or heavy-based frying pans – or a 23cm diameter pan to make a large cake – and place over a high heat. Add one-quarter of the potato mixture to each pan, or all of it to the large pan (it should sizzle loudly) and flatten firmly with a spatula. Reduce the heat to medium.
  4. Cook each cake for 35 minutes (perhaps slightly longer for the larger version), then run a palette knife or spatula around the edge and flip each one. Return to the heat for about 3 minutes more until the underside is nicely browned.
  5. Scoop the avocados out of their skins with a spoon and smash roughly with a little lime juice, the remaining coriander, sliced chilli and seasoning to taste. Serve each hot sweet potato cake with the avocado mixture spooned on top and lime quarters to squeeze over.
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