I like to think of my food as the Iron Giant or Elephant Man -- hideous monsters with a heart of gold. These sweet potato pancakes aren't much to look at, but as you've been told your whole life, it's what's on the inside that really counts -- and inside these guys is a mix of sweet and savory ingredients that blend nicely in ugly harmony. The mildly sweet spuds work surprisingly well with the Girl Scout shortbread, while the garlic, bacon and cheese add more complexity.
The recipe below was adapted from a Food Network potato pancake recipe (this one). If you find the potatoes difficult to form into patties for frying (as I did), you might like it served as a dollop of mashed potatoes.
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced into 1-inch cubes
1 box Trefoils
¼ cup cooked and crumbled bacon
1 tbsp. garlic, minced
¼ cup butter
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup shredded Cheddar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
How to make it:
In a large Dutch oven, add the potato and cover with water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer until tender, about 10 to 12 minutes. Drain well and add to a large bowl.
Mash the potato with the garlic and salt and pepper. Fold in 2/3 of the crumbled Trefoils, the egg, cheese, bacon and butter. Form the potato mixture into 3-inch patties. Put the remaining 1 cup of Trefoil crumbs in a shallow dish and dredge the potato patties in the crumbs.
In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the potato patties and cook until brown and crisp, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Arrange on a serving platter and serve immediately.
The Trefoil Showdown, so far: