Potato Puffballs

Just try to eat just one—we dare you. Here’s the original recipe from 1937: “Pare and boil 6 medium-size Maine potatoes. Drain. Mash very smooth and light. Add 2 large tablespoons butter, 1 cup hot milk, ½ cup mild grated cheese, and salt and pepper to taste. Beat until fluffy. While hot, shape into little balls, then roll in egg and breadcrumbs. Place on a well-buttered pan and brown delicately in a hot oven. Serve immediately.” Below is our updated version.


6 medium-size Maine Russet potatoes
2-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup hot whole milk
1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar (or blue cheese)
Pinch kosher or sea salt, plus extra to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 large eggs
4 cups unseasoned breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter


Heat oven to 400º.

Peel and cut potatoes into 2-inch chunks. Place in a pan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain well.

When cool enough to handle but still hot, pass potatoes through a ricer or food mill into a medium-size bowl. By hand, stir in hot milk and grated cheese. Add salt and pepper. Don’t overmix.

Beat eggs and place in a shallow dish or pie tin. Place breadcrumbs in a separate shallow pie tin. Oil and butter a rimmed baking sheet.

Form potato mixture into golf-ball-size rounds. Roll in eggs, then breadcrumbs. Working quickly, place on baking sheet 1 inch apart from one another.

Bake 10 minutes and flip, until browned and crisp. Season to taste with salt. Serve hot.

Cooking & Recipes


72 pieces

Preparation Time: 

40 minutes

Start to Finish Time: 

1-1/2 hours (1-

Preparation Method

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