Walnut Crusted Rutabaga Cakes

I hadn’t planned on posting this follow-up to my roasted rutabaga post the other day, but I was pretty please with the results (although the pictures are less than perfect, shot with my iPhone while in the process of making dinner).

I had some leftover mashed rutabaga and some leftover sage-date pistou, and I wanted to do something creative with the leftovers.

Enter rutabaga cakes. Fried, of course. Who doesn’t love fried food?

It’s fairly simple and took less than 30 minutes.

First, mix 1/2 cup of panko bread crumbs with 1/2 cup ground, toasted walnuts (walnuts are a perfect partner for sage and dates). Season the crumbs with salt and pepper and toss.

Next, scoop the mashed rutabaga and form into a patty. (I used a #30 ice cream scoop.)

Using a scoop ensures the patties are all the same size, which means they’ll cook evenly, not to mention look better.

Coat the cakes with the seasoned crumbs. Next, heat about 1/8-inch peanut oil (it has a higher smoking point than olive oil, but you can use canola oil instead) in a skillet over medium-high heat.

When the oil is hot, gently lay the rutabaga cakes into the pan and fry until golden on the first side, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Flip the cakes to the other side and cook until golden again on that side. That’s it.

I served the warm cakes, garnished with the sage-date pistou, on top of a spinach salad dressed with a sherry vinaigrette (you need a sharp counter point to the sweet rutabaga and pistou).

Of course, all this assumes you have leftover, mashed rutabaga and sage-date pistou. And if you don’t, well then, never mind.

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