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Image / Living / Food & Drink

Supper Club: Try these potato and cheese breads for a tasty Tuesday snack


By Sarah Finnan
15th Nov 2022
Supper Club: Try these potato and cheese breads for a tasty Tuesday snack

A traditional dish from Ecuador, llapingachos or potato and cheese breads can be served as an accompaniment to other dishes or as the star of the show.

Served at breakfast, lunch or supper, llapingachos are particularly good when paired with a spicy peanut sauce, fried egg, sliced avocado, tomato and freshly pickled red onion.

Originally from the highland city of Ambato, they can now be found all over Ecuador. Regional variations include the addition of fried pork in Riobamba and the addition of rice along the coast. The name is thought to derive from an amalgamation of a Quechua word, llapiy, meaning to crush, or llapina, meaning to feel or touch, and the Spanish word gacho, which means drooping. It is very unusual to find the word in the singular because, it is claimed, you can never eat just one!

Llapingachos  (potato and cheese breads)

Makes 10

Ingredients

  • 1 kg floury potatoes, peeled and chopped into evenly-sized pieces
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground achiote/annatto
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 100 g grated mozzarella

 

Method 

  1. Put the potatoes in a pan with enough water to cover, bring to the boil and cook until soft. Drain and mash them.
  2. Meanwhile lightly fry the onion and achiote in the oil until soft and translucent. 
  3. Add the onion mixture, salt and pepper to the mashed potatoes and mix well. Cover and set aside for about an hour.
  4. Divide the mixture into 10 portions of about 90 g /3 oz each and roll them into small balls.
  5. Make a hole in the middle of each ball, insert a piece of mozzarella and then reform the patty around it to make a flat potato cake. Put them on a tray or dish and refrigerate them for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Cook the patties in batches on a hot griddle or non-stick frying pan (no oil needed), turning once after a few minutes when browned. Take care when turning them as they are rather fragile.

Extracted from Traveller’s Cookbook: South America – Classic Recipes From 40 Years of Travel by Ben Box (Bradt Guides, 2022). Photography by Jose David Gutierrez, Shutterstock.