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Levi Roots’s Caribbean Cooking is one of the books that I am revisiting since spring cleaning. The original recipe for these potato cakes has cooked prawns added to the mix but the cakes taste equally good with or without them. I made half the cakes with prawns for my sister, while I had my half without.


makes 6 cakes

400 grams sweet potato

200 grams waxy potatoes

1/2 onion -finely chopped

2 cloves garlic – finely chopped

1 red chilli – finely chopped

1 teaspoon ground cumin

2 tablespoons plain flour – plus extra for coating the cakes

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander

oil for frying

50 grams cooked prawns per portion – Optional – cut into pieces if they are large

Scrub the sweet potato and bake it whole in its skin at 190 C for 30 – 40 minutes until it is soft and tender. Leave to cool.

Peel the white potatoes and cut into smallish chunks. Boil in salted water until tender. Drain and leave to cool.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a frying pan and add the onion, garlic and chilli. Cook gently until translucent.

In a bowl mash the sweet and white potatoes. Add the onion mix and mash to mix in.

Add the seasonings and flour, then mix in with a spoon.

If one half of your mix is, like mine, having prawns, divide the mix into two and make one half into three cakes, forming them on a flour covered plate and turning them so that they are evenly covered in flour.
Add the prawns to the other half of the potatoes and mix well. Make three cakes as before.

Heat oil in a frying pan and cook the cakes on a medium heat until nicely browned on one side. Turn over and cook on the other side.

Serve with this spicy avocado salsa.


1 small avocado – finely chopped

1 large tomato – finely chopped

1 clove garlic – crushed with a pinch of salt

1 spring onion – finely chopped

1 red chilli – finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

juice of a 1 small or 1/2 large lime

2 tablespoons olive oil

hot chilli sauce – if needed

Mix all the ingredients together well, mashing them slightly as you mix.

Taste for seasonings adding chilli sauce if needed.

To go with the cakes, I made Rice and Peas, cooked in coconut milk, from the same book. I’ll give you that recipe tomorrow. Hasta mañana!