I'm okay with my Kakor Havreflarns - it's my Grönsakskaka I'm worried about.
January 15, 2012 11:20 AM   Subscribe

Grönsakskaka - I love it. Or them. I don't even know if their name is plural. They're the potato and broccoli cakes from Ikea. I want to make them, but can't seem to find a recipe that will give me what I like most about them - their texture. What I do not like about them? The price.

Googling straight up as well as using an image search to find what might be recipes - not just blog posts promoting their deliciousness - gives me recipes like this, which isn't right at all. One likened it to "bubble and squeak", which it's just not. This recipe - if I could get a translation of it - might be right, if I can make it into the individual servings that I like.

The ingredients listed on the box are: potatoes (35%), cream, broccoli (15%), leek, onion, cheese, vegetable oil, salt, stabiliser (methyl cellulose, disodium diphosphate), natural vegetable flavor, chervil, parsley, chive, pepper. For what comes in the box for about $8 here, I should be able to make so many more from scratch. I'd like to make a batch and flash-freeze them for easy storage. I kind of get the proportions, and am happy to play with spices and flavourings, but I have a few questions:

I am having one (fine, some) now, and what I like is the size and texture of the potato bits. That's a lot of pretty fine dicing, or maybe is it ricing? But I also like how the outside is a bit of a lightly browned "skin" holding the melty and nicely mixed and quite fluffy insides together. What makes it browned - do they pre-bake them? What is binding the ingredients together? How can I do that and keep the insides fluffy?

If I put them in a muffin tin, do I bake them first and then freeze them, or flash-freeze right from the mixture? I am actually thinking I'd prefer to use an ice-cream scoop for rounded ones, and more surface to brown. They're pretty small, but if Ikea bakes them first, and then they still need to bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes at home, and it doesn't make much of a difference in their appearance from frozen, well, what I'm saying is: I just don't get the what happens between putting the ingredients together in a bowl and putting them in my mouth.

Any help would be great. I can cook things and follow recipes just fine - I'm great at meat, stews, all kinds of things like that - but baking seems to be a science that I haven't got down and I have more disasters than successes. Please help me (and my family) eat more small potato broccoli muffin cake things?
posted by peagood to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Are they possibly fried before you get them, and you just reheat them in the oven? (I don't think our IKEA has these.) They sound like big tater tots with broccoli added.
posted by lakeroon at 11:48 AM on January 15, 2012

Best answer: Your second link then:

Ingredients for 8 pieces
2-3 fresh yellow [as in: ordinary] onions
1 large carrot
2 fennel bulbs, c. 600 g/21 ounces
2 dl/just under a cup double cream
2 tablespoon tomato puree
1 teaspoon thyme [sounds like an awful lot to me]
1 teaspoon salt [ymmv., especially since Swedish cheeses contain less salt than many others]
1 krm/ c. 1/5 teaspoon black pepper
5 eggs
2 dl/just under one cup grated aged cheese (cheddar probably a good replacement for the original Prästost)

Preheat the oven on 392F. Peel the onions and the carrot. Slice onions, carrot and fennel. Cut carrot in strips [i suppose julienne-style]. Sauté all the veggies in a large skillet in the butter. Stir in the double cream and spice it up with the tomato puree, thyme, salt and pepper, let cook for about 15minutes. Let cool. Beat the eggs, add the cheese and stir this into the veggies. Pour into a buttered ovenproof dish, preferably one with a detachable bottom, bake in the lower part of the oven for about 40 minutes. Serve lukewarm or cold, decorate with some [undefined, i may add] fresh herbs. Serve together with bread, salad and olives.

So that's also different from what you describe. But perhaps you can approach it from there, using the ingredients from your package. Knowing diced Swedish potato kitchen results, I would guess that the potatoes in yours are indeed finely diced (like, 0.2 inch cubes) and indeed pre-browned, makes everything yummier. If you use broccoli, make relatively small florets, peel [don't discard] the stems and pre-cook them in much lively-boiling salted water in a large pot without the lid (keeps the broccoli green); drain, cut to pieces that suit your preference in the final product, set aside, add eventually to whatever else you're preparing.

Well, hum.
If I look at the recipe above, I'd itch to begin tweaking even before the first try. Use half butter half olive oil, a minimum of two tablespoons. Cook the sliced onions on low for at least 20 minutes until deep golden, add the carrot, fennel (and/or whatever else veggie occurs to you, really, apart from the broccoli, which is better prepared as described above), sauté for a minute on slightly higher, fill up with a cup of water and a dash of dry white wine and perhaps that tomato puree (or diced canned tomato to taste, or, in September: diced fresh tomatoes) and at least Oregano/Marjoram, Thyme, freshly ground black pepper, maybe also rosemary. Cook until the fennel (or whatever) gets tender, then reduce your sauce to the barest minimum, set aside. Spice your egg-cheese mix with a grating of nutmeg, some pressed garlic, top everything in the baking dish with butter flakes...

This may not be authentic, but I guarantee that it's going to be tastier.
posted by Namlit at 12:08 PM on January 15, 2012 [3 favorites]

Grönsakskaka, btw. is one. More would be grönsakskakor. Which is okay, too.
posted by Namlit at 12:09 PM on January 15, 2012

Here is a recipe for broccoli-potato pancakes. I wonder if you could rice the potatoes and fold them in rather than mashing them, and then butter a muffin tin and bake them that way, in order to get them a little thicker and cake-ier than the pancakes they are here. I would add cream, too, until they're a thinner in texture than the usual potato-pancake batter. And I'd pre-cook the onions. And I'd use less thyme.
posted by palliser at 12:13 PM on January 15, 2012

Oh, if you're cooking in a muffin tin -- Butter the tops, too, to get them to brown nicely.
posted by palliser at 12:16 PM on January 15, 2012

Best answer: To me this, is a homemade fishcakes, except with broccoli instead of fish. I'd grate the potato and onion beforehand to make basically hash, and form cakes with those.
posted by DarlingBri at 12:29 PM on January 15, 2012 [1 favorite]

You know what has a very similar texture/vibe and is cheap? Trader Joe's Tofu Edamame nuggets. Don't know how they make them either, but doesn't cost a lot to keep a freezer full of them.
posted by apparently at 12:36 PM on January 15, 2012

Best answer: These look like a cross between a croquette and a rösti. You've probably got some egg in there for the binding, and some potato-powder, but for the rice or dice question, I am going to guess it's the roughest side of the grater. You don't list cauliflower as an ingredient, but I am seeing that elsewhere on the web.

They are also being described in english as "vegetable medallions", and I see some recipe suggestions for that hit. That might get you closer.
posted by Iteki at 12:37 PM on January 15, 2012

I'd grate the potato and onion beforehand to make basically hash, and form cakes with those.

This will probably come out with a kugel-type texture, which will likely be denser than a cake made of pre-cooked and riced potato. Just depends what you want. If you want something creamier, you would probably steam or boil and then rice the potato first.
posted by palliser at 2:31 PM on January 15, 2012

Response by poster: Thanks - I think the DarlingBri's mention of "fishcakes" + Iteki's "rosti" and "medallions" gives me the texture that I like, and Namlit's recipe tweaks will get me there.

I am very very grateful, and mostly because my brain never made the leap to using the roughest side of the grater for the right texture of the potatoes.

I dissected a cooked one today, and spread out each bit to see the proportions, and was envisioning cutting matchstick potatoes for hours on end. The goal is to be able to spend a day making a good amount of them to freeze for lunches, dinners and comfort-food emergencies.

And thanks, Hades - I never thought of using an egg ring or tuna can to get the nice shape - I was thinking of what a pain it would be to clean my muffin tin if it didn't work out, and how it would just look like another thing made in a muffin tin. Sometimes I might try to pretend I made something elegant with them by putting fancy stuff on top.
posted by peagood at 5:31 PM on January 15, 2012

Best answer: Here is a recipe from a food blog. Kim's Word On Food:

Okay I have solved the IKEA recipe!

The most important key is the type of potato you use. Use a potato that remains firm once boiled. Don’t go crazy on butter or cream it will water your medallions down and make them run.

Recipe, makes 4 ramikins

3 med. Potates, firm chopped into 1/4 inche cubes.

4-5 Brocolli flourettes, steamed

1 TBS Celery, finely chopped

1 lrg Garlic, finely chopped

1 med. handful of Parmesan, shredded fine (Cheddar would also work, but use less. Goat cheese could also be yum.)

1 egg white

1 TBS creme fraiche

1 TBS Whipped Cream

Salt and Pepper

Red Onion, Optional


I am not a big fan of potato peeling as most of the nutrients are found in the skin and I really don’t mind potato skins in my mash potatoes and soups. I like the country, wholesome look it gives. But, if you are a potato peeler sort go for it.

Chop your potatoes into 1/4 inch/1cm cubes. Bring to a boil in well salted water and cook until you can get a fork through them and they split into two firm pieces. Don’t forget to steam your broccoli. Don’t let it go mushy. While this is going on chop up your celery finely then lightly saute.

Put potatoes and broccoli to the side to cool. In a bowl add your grated cheese, egg, whipped cream, creme fraiche, celery, garlic, salt and pepper. Add your potatoes to the bowl and roughly mash them leaving firm chunks and stir together. Add your broccoli and careully stir it in. The key is to have a stiff mix that will hold its shape when baked.

Okay, as I have yet to buy a cooking ring I used ramikins to bake them. Oil your ramikin with a light layer of oil. I put a thin ring of red onion at the bottom of each ramikin to add an extra element, but also to make it easier to get the potato meddallions out of the ramikin.

Bake in the oven for approximately 30 minutes until the top is golden brown. Pull them out of the oven and let them cool for a couple of minutes before you use a knife to loosen the edges from the ramikin. Then carefully shake the meddallions over the plate to tease the meddallions out. There you go IKEA grönsaks medaljonger. IKEA potato meddallions.
posted by JujuB at 5:44 PM on January 15, 2012 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks, JujuB! This is also a good one too - I like the creme fraiche part of it. I have experimenting to do! I didn't find leeks where I was shopping yesterday (one of the parts I like about Ikea's), so I can't get started right away, but soon, soon...
posted by peagood at 7:04 AM on January 16, 2012

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