• Kate

Potato Pancake-Bacon Bites

If you ever meet one set of my longtime family friends you will get to hear exactly how much I love snacks. When I was very young, maybe 3 years old, Mrs. A woke up one early morning to the sound of rummaging in her kitchen. Descending the stairs she stumbled upon a young Kate in her PJs sitting at the open pantry. “I want a snack,” I said to this bewildered woman.

I had ended up crawling out of bed, out of my room, and ultimately out of my house. Young me walked through the woods, another neighbor’s yard, and through Mrs. A’s sliding glass door. Obviously, no one in this small Rhode Island neighborhood in the ’90s locked their door so my B&E went relatively smooth.

A girl needed a snack.

Last year at my Christmas party instead of creating a full-scale dinner I opted for a few appetizers. I felt that the night would be best spent snacking! This year I was going to make one of those appetizers again, a cracker wrapped in bacon with parmesan cheese. I got this idea from Pinterest and it was a hit! However, my mind went off and I wanted to improve the idea for my tastes. It led to a Potato Pancake-Bacon Bites.

Potato Pancake-Bacon Bites

  • 2 C Mashed Potatoes

  • 2 Tbsp Parsley, Chopped

  • ⅓ C Flour

  • 3 Tbsp Canola Oil

  • 1 Packet of Bacon

  • Saltines, or any Cracker

  • ¼ C Parmesan Cheese, Grated

Yields 20-24 bites

Does anyone else ever make way too many mashed potatoes? For some reason, I can never predict how much I need and can’t relate the whole potato to how much it will produce. So, I end up with a few cups left over and I hate waste. I end up freezing the bagged leftovers and wait for their day in the sun. If you need a recipe for mashed potatoes you can find mine HERE.

That day was today! If you are going to use frozen mashed potatoes let them thaw out overnight then squeeze the water out. We don’t want wet potatoes.

Preheat your oven to 350℉ with racks placed in the middle.

Combine flour and parsley to your mashed potatoes in a bowl, mix together with your hands until sticky. If your potatoes are still a bit wet you may need to use a little more flour. We want our ‘dough’ to be able to hold a ball shape and easily be rolled between our palms. Make quarter-sized balls and flatten with a even surface until they are about a ¼” thick.

In a frying pan heat up 3 Tbsp of canola or vegetable oil until a drop of water bounces across the surface. Carefully place a few potato pancakes into the pan, but do not crowd. Fry each side until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and place into a paper towel to catch the extra oil.

Once all your pancakes are finished it is time to prep our bites. Begin by cutting your strips of bacon in half lengthwise then in half again crosswise, 4 pieces from one strip.

Place a pancake on top of a cracker wrap with one piece of bacon tightly, being sure to overlap your ends. Take a second piece and wrap your cracker the other way like a present. You can never have too much bacon.

Place your completed bites onto a cookie cooling rack on top of a baking sheet spacing them evenly. We double layer the pan so when the bacon grease begins to cook out it will drip through the rack and gather in the pan leaving the bottoms of the crackers dry and not sitting in the grease.

Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and bake for 20 minutes or until your bacon is nice and crispy

Next comes the dipping sauce!

Garlic-Parsley Dipping Sauce

  • ¼ C Mayo

  • 2 Tbsp Chopped Parsley

  • 1 Tsp Lemon Juice

  • ¼ Tsp Salt

  • ¼ Tsp Pepper

  • ½ Tsp Chopped Garlic

  • ⅛ Tsp Paprika

  • ⅛ Tsp Cayenne Pepper

This sauce is pretty straightforward, mix all ingredients into your bowl. The acidic lemon juice is a wonderful way to thin out heavy mayo and adding a few extra flavors will make your guests think you purchased it from the store.

If you want an extra kick, add a jalapeno. I go through ebbs and flows when it comes to cooking with this pepper so I tend to chop and freeze 1 Tbsp servings when I buy too much and don’t want them to go bad. That way when the situation arises and whatever I am making needs a little heat I have jalapenos on hand.

Allow to melt, add pieces and the water (it is possible some heat was leached out into the water during the freezing process) into your sauce.

Set out with your bites, its snack time! Enjoy!

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