I’ve always wanted a potato cake recipe like this, and I spent some time perfecting it. Would it be better to coat the mashed potato cakes in panko? I wondered. It turned out to be too much trouble, and didn’t make the cakes that much crispier. What if I sprinkled cheese on the outside to make a crisp, savory crust? Nope. That didn’t add as much punch as I’d expected. This straightforward recipe — it takes just a few minutes to pull together if you have leftover mashed potatoes on hand — yielded the best results, and will be a potato pancake I go back to again and again. I hope you do, too.