Potato Pancakes W/Katenspeck and Cheese (German)

Total Time
Prep 15 mins
Cook 30 mins

Few things are more-identified w/traditional German cuisine than potato pancakes. This recipe from *Modern German Food* by Roz Denny takes your garden-variety potato pancake & expands it to include the flavors of ham & cheese. Katenspeck is from the word *Katen* & means "barn" in German, i.e. this ham is made farmhouse-style (cured, smoked & cooked). Roz's intro read: "Potato pancakes are a traditional Rheinland confection. Once it was mother who wielded the pan. Nowadays spec dys in bars & cafes are the ideal opportunity to sample this dish & there are street stalls selling them. The most famous is outside the Cologne railway station, so visitors have no excuse not to sample this delicacy! The pancakes are sometimes served w/applesauce, but this version w/chopped crispy Katenspeck, grated onion & cheese is always popular." Made me hungry just to think about it & the pic pushed me well over that hunger edge. (Pls see notes after prep Re cheese & cooking time). *Enjoy* !

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Coarsely grate potatoes & squeeze dry w/your hands or a colander, pressing down w/the back of a ladle.
  2. Place in a bowl w/the grated onion & mix in the flour. Add salt, some freshly ground black pepper + herbs & set aside.
  3. In a lrg non-stick fry pan, fry chopped ham till crisp. Remove ham from pan, but leave rendered fat in pan. Stir crisped ham + cheese into the potato mixture.
  4. Heat 1 tbsp canola oil w/the rendered fat. When hot, drop in a rounded tbsp of potato mixture & flatten w/the back of a spoon to a round shape or as neatly as you can.
  5. Fry for 2-3 min over med-heat till golden brown & flip to cook the other side. Repeat w/the mixture in batches. Top up the oil as needed & make sure it is hot b4 frying ea batch. Drain on paper towels, keep uncovered in a warm oven till all batches are cooked & then have a feast.
  6. NOTE RE CHEESE: Suggested ideal subs for Emmenthal are: American Swiss cheese, Raclette, Gruyère, Jarlsberg & Alpine Lace from Wisconsin.
  7. NOTE RE YIELD & TIMES: # of servings was shown, but not the yield. Since the pancakes are cooked in batches & w/o the yield, the cooking time was entirely guesstimated.
Most Helpful

The taste and texture are wonderful, but I'm afraid I must be a potato pancake failure...my cakes just would not stay together. But I pieced them together and made the best of it. Delicious...plus I had lots of the potato mixture leftover....really makes a lot! So we will have a delicious breakfast tomorrow too! Thanks for sharing! Made for Football tag on Yuku 2014!

breezermom December 16, 2014

Awesome! Loved them! I reduced to make a nice lunch for me; they were wonderful! I used a salt-cured smoked ham (which is as close to Katenspeck as I can get.) The cheese was all melty, and the potatoes were crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. These will be great in the winter, with a nice soup! Thanks for sharing, twissis. Made for ZWT.

alligirl June 03, 2010

This is a great recipe! I used swiss cheese too. We enjoyed the cheesy taste and the ham made it all that better. I made this to go with pork schnitzel and homemade rye bread for our german-themed dinner. Thanks for sharing. Made for ZWT 6.

CJAY May 24, 2010