How to prepare Rösti

High Angle Still Life of Golden Crisp Fried Potato Rosti Pancakes Served in Dish with Creamy Dill Sauce on Textured Grey Counter Surface.
Copyright: foodandmore

Rösti are the  Swiss take on cooking and presenting potatoes. They are flat cakes of grated potato along with a host of other tasty ingredients. The potato is grated, formed into a fritter to which herbs are often added and then fried.  It is a slightly more earthy version of that French classic Pommes Anna without all that butter.

The dish was originally eaten at breakfast time in Switzerland, but it also makes part of a delicious meal for breakfast, lunch or dinner in its own right. Rösti is typically served with cabbage, cod and salmon, sausages, cured meat, salami with cornichons and pickles, other meats and cheese especially cream cheese but they work very well on their own.  It also acts as a bed for meat such as steaks and other cuts so its versatility has been extended. We know folk who top it with cheese, spinach, or fried eggs. Some like to dollop soured cream on them with apple sauce which may seem odd but there we are. I think we’ve covered most foods except Brussel sprouts.

Generally, a rösti takes 15 minutes to prepare with 15 minutes to cook. We have two variants described below. The simplest is grated potato with butter and the other is a version I have reproduced from a Geneva breakfast bar I once visited. If you don’t plan on serving at that moment it is OK to place them in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to eight hours.

Serves 2 or 3

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  • 2-3 Maris Piper or King Edward potatoes (about 500g/16oz), peeled and coarsely grated
  • 1 medium egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp plain flour or all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ small onion, finely chopped
  • 6 sage leaves, 2 finely chopped, leave 4 whole
  • 3 tbsp sunflower or vegetable oil, but just for frying and using 1 tablespoon for each side and the 3rd for frying those sage leaves

You can achieve something similar but plainer with the cut down version that is:

  • 2-3 Maris Piper or King Edward potatoes (about 500g/16oz), peeled and coarsely grated
  • 50g unsalted butter, melted with some extra 
  • 3 tbsp sunflower or vegetable oil, but just for frying


  1. Grate the potatoes into a bowl and then pour a kettles worth of boiled water on them. Leave to stand for about a minute or slightly longer.
  2. Drain in a colander.
  3. Squeeze any excess water out of the grated potatoes once they are cool enough, by putting them in a tea-towel and pressing or placing between two paper kitchen towels and just patting as dry as possible.
  4. The simplest recipe using the cut down version with melted butter is to just add it otherwise go with step 5 for the more complex recipe.
  5. Put the grated potato into a bowl and mix well with the egg, flour, baking powder, onion and chopped sage leaves. Season well.
  6. Heat two tablespoons of oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat.
  7. Spoon the mixture in to make three or four röstis.
  8. Flatten them down with the back of a spoon to form burger shapes as they fry.
  9. Cook for five or six minutes on each side until golden brown and crisp, then drain on kitchen paper. They have a tendency to stick to the pan surface with frying so loosen with a spatula like an omelette. You can keep them warm on a low heat until ready to serve.
  10. If you do the more complex version, heat the remaining one tablespoon of oil in the frying pan over a medium heat.
  11. Add the whole sage leaves and cook for 20 seconds until crisp but still green.
  12. Drain each one on kitchen paper and top each rösti with a fried sage leaf.
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