Here is a recipe for the “classic” potato-and-leek schales as prepared in Pennsylvania Dutch country, but you can drop out the potatoes and use shredded carrots, shredded turnips, kohlrabies, or even pre-cooked grains like wild rice, spelt, or dried sweet corn; indeed the combinations are endless!
• 3 tablespoons drawn butter or cooking oil of your choice
• 1/2 cup finely diced celery
• 1-1/2 cups chopped leek
• 2-1/2 pounds fingerling or salad potatoes, shredded on the large holes of a vegetable grater
• 1 tablespoon minced garlic, or to taste
• 1/4 cup cooking oil
• 1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs
• 3 whole eggs, well beaten
• 1 tablespoon salt or to taste
• 1 teaspoon freshly grated pepper
• 2 tablespoons chopped fresh marjoram (or 1 tablespoon dried)
• 1 cup milk
• Butter for the top
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Heat the oil in a sauté pan and add the celery and leek and cover. Sweat over a medium-high heat for 4 minutes, then remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
3. Add the potato and garlic and the 1/4 cup of oil. Sauté over a medium-high heat until the potatoes are hot and cooked tender, but not soft (about 6-8 minutes). Remove and combine with the reserved celery mixture.
4. Add 3 tablespoons of breadcrumbs, the eggs, salt, pepper, marjoram, and milk. Combine to make a thick, stiff batter.
5. Grease a broad (11-1/2-inch) baking pan and dust with bread crumbs. Add the potato mixture and pat smooth.
6. Dust the top of the potato mixture with the remaining breadcrumbs and dot liberally with butter. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the top begins to brown.
7. Serve immediately with chopped chives and sour cream.