Thomasina Miers’ recipe for parsnip and potato rösti with watercress and hazelnut salad

I am hoping that you’re in the throes of eating your way through a delicious concoction of food. If you are anything like me, you will have over-egged the quantities and be wondering how on earth you will get through the food mountain. This rösti is a deliciously crisp solution for the parsnips and potatoes that mount up in our cupboards; something simple to put together, with a refreshing, zesty salad to cut through all that richness elsewhere. I hope it helps.

Parsnip and potato rösti with watercress and hazelnut salad
There is something irresistible about this rösti, with all its buttery goodness and the peppery, nutty side salad. Bliss.

Prep 25 min
Cook 20 min
Serves 4-6

400g floury potatoes, scrubbed clean and coarsely grated
400g parsnips, peeled and coarsely grated
1 medium white onion, peeled and coarsely grated
4 large sage leaves, finely chopped
2-3 tbsp olive or vegetable oil
50g butter

For the salad
100g watercress
40g hazelnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
1 ½ tbsp hazelnut oil or extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp sherry vinegar
Zest of 1 orange
Salt and black pepper
40g parmesan or pecorino, shaved

Put the grated potatoes in a tea towel and wring out as much liquid as you can. Transfer to a large bowl with the parsnips, onion, sage and a tablespoon of oil. Season well and mix together with your hands.

Put your largest nonstick frying pan on a medium heat, add a few knobs of the butter and a splash of oil – you will need to cook the rösti in batches, so turn on the oven to low to keep the cooked ones warm. When the fat is hot and sizzling, add small handfuls of the potato mix, then flatten them down with a wooden spoon and shape into rounds. Add extra butter or oil to the pan if it looks dry. Fry for five to six minutes on each side, very carefully turning them over with a spatula when golden underneath. Depending on the size of the röstis, you should end up with 10 to 12.

Wash the watercress and pop it in a bowl with the hazelnuts. Dress with the oil, sherry vinegar and orange zest, season lightly and gently toss to coat.

Put the rösti on to plates, top first with the salad and then the shaved cheese, and serve immediately.