1/4 pound bacon, chopped
1 cup mashed potatoes (use leftovers) or make fresh using 4 medium potatoes
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
3-4 scallions, sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup dried potato flakes
Canola oil, for frying
Pre-heat a large skillet over medium heat and cook the bacon until golden brown. Remove to a paper towel-lined platter to drain.
In a large mixing bowl, combine cooled mashed potatoes and the sour cream, cheddar cheese, scallions, egg, cooked bacon, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix well.
Pour the potato flakes into a shallow dish.
With a small ice cream scoop or teaspoon, dollop spoonfuls of the potato mixture on the potato flakes. Roll them around in the potato flakes so that each mashed potato ball gets thoroughly coated (they should each be about 1 inch in diameter). Set the coated potato balls aside on a plate and repeat with the rest of the potato mixture (you should have about 15 pieces).
Once your potatoes are all rolled they can be refrigerated, covered, for up to two days. In a medium pot over medium-high heat, add enough canola oil to go 2 inches up the side. Let the oil heat up to 375°F. When you put a ball in, it should sizzle, but not get dark right away.
Fry the potato balls a few at a time, making sure not to crowd the pot. Once they are golden brown on all sides, remove with a slotted spoon and place them on a paper towel-lined plate to drain the excess oil. Repeat until all the potato balls are fried.
If you aren't serving them right away or are bringing them somewhere, pack them up gently or place them on a baking sheet. Right before serving, place them in a 400°F oven, uncovered, for about 5 minutes, until they are heated through and crisp.