Crispy Flattened Potatoes with Celery Leaves and Lemon

Our meals have been a little random lately. Instead of planning what will go with what, we often cook a bunch of simple sides and eat them all together. We’ve been making these crispy flattened potatoes at least once a week with all of the potatoes we’ve gotten from our farm share.

The idea comes from chef Ana Sortun of Oleana. Our weekly CSA e-mail typically includes tips and recipes from her, and a few weeks ago she included a description for how she likes to cook fresh-dug potatoes. She suggested boiling them until just tender, flattening them with the bottom of a coffee cup, and then pan-frying them in butter and olive oil. Yes, please.

Crispy Flattened Potatoes with Celery Leaves and Lemon

You can probably see why this has become a staple recipe around here. It can be updated with different herbs, so we vary it depending on what we get in our weekly box. This week, we got a huge bunch of celery with tons and tons of celery leaves. Not wanting the fragrant leaves to go to waste, I experimented with throwing them into the crispy flattened potatoes at the end as if they were an herb.

They were delicious! I went light on the celery leaves since I knew they tasted a little bitter raw, but I would probably use even more next time. The bitterness seemed to completely go away when cooked just a little bit, and they gave a nice fresh flavor to the potatoes. A little fresh lemon juice and lots of flaky salt finished them off nicely.

Not surprisingly, these are also excellent with a fried egg on top. In my head, the fact that they’re “farm-fresh” totally counteracts the fact that I’m eating fried eggs with fried potatoes. It’s fine.

Crispy Flattened Potatoes with Celery Leaves and Lemon

Crispy Flattened Potatoes with Celery Leaves and Lemon

Adapted from recipe by Ana Sortun


  • Small potatoes (we used fresh-dug red gold potatoes from our CSA, but I think you could use any small yellow-flesh potatoes)
  • Equal parts olive oil and butter (see note)
  • Large handful celery leaves, roughly chopped
  • Flaky salt, such as Maldon
  • Fresh lemon juice


  • Gently scrub the potatoes clean so that you don’t lose much skin (the skin on fresh-dug potatoes is very thin). Put them in a large pot of cold, salted water and bring to a boil. Cook until just tender.
  • Bring the whole pot to the sink and run cold water over them until they cool down. Then, carefully drain the potatoes and use the bottom of a coffee cup to press them flat. Be careful to not smash them so much that they fall apart, though a few broken pieces are perfectly fine.
  • Heat a large skillet with at least enough oil and butter (equal parts) to skim the pan. Pan-fry the flattened potatoes on both sides until golden and crispy. When they are just about finished, throw in the celery leaves and cook for about a minute. Remove the potatoes and celery leaves with a slotted spoon and transfer to a serving plate. Sprinkle with flaky salt and squeeze fresh lemon juice on top.


Don't skimp on the cooking fat here. It won't all end up in the final dish if you use a slotted spoon to transfer the potatoes, and it makes a world of difference in the crispiness.

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