This Irish potato boxty recipe is based on the most famous Irish staple, the potato. And was what many people call today an “accidentally vegan” dish. Back then most Irish people didn’t have enough money to be buying meat and dairy on a daily basis, so, we lived of staples like potatoes, bread, and cabbage.
At my job I get to read through the schools collection of the Irish Folklore Commission, conducted in the 1930’s. The schools collection consists of thousands of copybooks filled with stories, poems, songs, games they used to play, clothes they used to wear, food they used to eat, information about the pupils’ families, home parishes, hobbies etc etc! It is so interesting reading about the past from the pupils own perspectives.
Among the topics covered in the collection was old recipes. And what recipes came up time and time again? Boxty, potato bread, boxty, potato bread, boxty…..you get the idea! So seeing as I had the recipes of the children of 1930’s Ireland, I decided not to look up any modern versions of the recipe online at all and took the recipe straight from the old collections. Here’s a screenshot of the variation I copied:
I sourced my potatoes from our local organic farm Ballyholey who provide the most amazing tasting fresh and seasonal produce all year round from Raphoe, Donegal.
About the butter: obviously as this is a vegan blog I used Pure soya butter instead of normal butter. It tastes the same and does the same thing but has a miniscule amount of saturated fat compared to real butter and no cholesterol! Oh, and it’s cheaper. Win win.
I used gluten-free flour here to make this suitable for my Mum who’s ceoliac, but, feel free to use whatever flour you like!
Makes: 4/5 boxty pancakes
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 45 minutes
You will need:
4 Potatoes of equal size*
Pure soya butter
Gluten-free plain flour
*To make this for more people just use equal quantities of grated to mashed potato.
- Wash and peel the potatoes
- Put half your potatoes on to boil.
- Grate the other half of your potatoes into a bowl.
- Put the grated potatoes into a tea-towel and squeeze out all the liquid until you have the dried potato gratings.
- When the other potatoes are boiled mash them well using a potato masher.
- Combine the grated potatoes and mashed potatoes in a bowl and add salt and pepper.
- Add a tablespoon of flour into the potato mixture a mix in with your hands until you have a type of potatoey dough.
- Sprinkle some flour over a dry counter and knead your dough for a few minutes.
- Using a floured rolling pin roll out the dough and cut into squares or “farls”. The recipe I followed said to roll it out thinly but you can roll it out to whatever thickness you want.
- Melt some vegan butter in a hot frying pan and add your boxty pancakes to the pan. Brown them on each side and then lower the heat and let them cook through slowly. This should take around 10-15 minutes depending on how thick your boxty cakes are.
- Enjoy your boxty for breakfast with vegan sausages and ketchup, or for your dinner with thyme fried mushrooms, fried cabbage, beans and vegan sausages.