A Delicious Hot Golden Crrrrunchy Indulgence from Way Way Back
Part of growing up and going to school in Melbourne (Australia) involved taking the number 8 tram to Toorak Village on a Friday afternoon and heading STRAIGHT to the fish and chip shop. It’s no longer there but I still recall the white tiled shop, the row of huge deep fryers along one wall, the huge dim sum (or ‘dimmies’ as we called them!) steamer on the counter and of course the delicious smells of frying oil, batter and fried fish.
I was most often there with my best friend Tamara and (after checking out all the boys on the tram) we would always order the same thing each week. A couple of steamed dimmies (they were large steamed dumplings filled with meat of unknown origin) and a potato cake or two. Could there be a better after school snack?
Imagine a large disc of pressed soft potato, a bit bigger than the diameter of a baseball. It is then coated in thick fish and chip shop batter (again, of unknown ingredients) and thrown into the vat of boiling oil. What comes out is a golden, craggy, super super crisp, thick (in a good way) and crrrrrrunchy outside encasing soft, hot as hell, potato inside. Sprinkled with lots of salt and a splash of brown vinegar, I am in heaven. I can’t tell you how much my mouth is watering at this very moment as I am typing.
Nowadays I live in Sydney where I can’t seem to find the same dimmies – and I’m not sure I want to – but in every fish and chip shop you will find potato cakes. Only one thing though, they call them potato SCALLOPS here. No, they are not scalloped potato. No, they are not fresh scallops from the sea. So why oh why are they called scallops when they are clearly CAKES?!?!
They are not something I eat often these days and if I did, it would probably be with a little secrecy. We’ve all gone a little anti fried food, ant-batter and sadly even anti-potato so there’s not much room in my life for potato cakes. Maybe just once in a long while. Whenever I do (secretly) indulge, I savour every single bite. Maybe it’s time to become out and proud of my potato cake desire. I think this weekend just might be the time…
But perhaps my potato latkes are the next best thing?
This post is part of Let’s Lunch (#LetsLunch), a twitter-based virtual lunch club where anyone interested can join this monthly ‘lunch date’. A topic is posted at the beginning of the month, everyone now takes it in turns, and all posts are made on the same day by this random but lovely group of food bloggers, writers and people who just love cooking from all around the world. The topic is hilarious: food we love that we have to hide from the world.
Anyone can join at any time – just join us on twitter by searching and adding the hashtag #LetsLunch. Check out the others’ posts SOON, they will be right below.
Cheryl’s Singaporean Sardine Sandwiches at Cheryl Lu Lien Tan
Betty Ann‘s Adobo Eggs at Asian in America
Linda‘s Pinakbet (Filipino Vegetable Stew) at Spicebox Travels
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