Happy Hanukah! Here’s Latkes Four Ways

Happy Chanukah! Latkes Four Ways (Clockwise from bottom left: Potato Latkes, Potato & Sweet Potato, Potato Zucchini, Sweet Potato, Zucchini and Parsnip)

Happy Chanukah!
Latkes Four Ways (Clockwise from bottom left:
Potato Latkes, Potato & Sweet Potato, Potato Zucchini, Sweet Potato, Zucchini and Parsnip)

 

It’s that time of year again where it’s not only justifiable to eat a big pile of fried food, but it’s almost required. Yes, I’m talking about Hanukah (or Chanukah, or Hanukkah-However you want to spell it.) Jelly donuts and potato latkes are pretty much staples  around our house for the eight days of this Festival of Lights (well, to be clear, it’s me that eats the donuts, but we’re not going to discuss that right now in case my trainer is listening…)

 

I’m famous for a lot of traditional foods, like brisket, chicken soup, and more, plus for a lot of other great dishes (that are healthier), but my latkes are pretty legendary.

 

It may be so just in my own mind, but they I’ll take what I can get.

 

There’s a reason my latkes are so good (swelled head, much?). I have two secrets.

 

1. I hand grate everything. With a box grater. Like an old fashioned person. Why do I do this, you ask? Especially when there are modern conveniences like food processors and when hand grating an onion could be akin to torturing oneself? Well, because when you hand grate the potatoes (and other vegetables), they keep their shape better, and you get a lacier crispier latke. Think of these like potato pancakes with integrity.

 

 

2. I use a fork to mix and scoop. When you pick up the mixture with a fork, it’s the solids that get picked up, and the liquids (which inhibit crispiness) are left in the bowl. Also, flattening the pancake with a fork enhances crispiness. Just trust me on this.

 

 

Latkes Four Ways

 

What You’ll Need:

 

2 Large Yukon Gold Potatoes, washed (I never peel them. I’m lazy and I’ve convinced myself it adds to the flavour)

1 Large Sweet Potato (see note above regarding peeling)

1 large zucchini, washed, one end cut off

1 large parsnip, peeled

1 large cooking onion, peeled, one end cut off

1/2 cup of matzo meal or flour

1 egg per 2 cups of vegetable mixture

salt and pepper to taste

Oil for frying

Sour cream and applesauce

 

What You’ll Do:

 

Using a box grater, grate each item on the large shred holes. Watch your knuckles!!

 

Mix about 2 cups of grated vegetable with 1/4 of grated onion,  1 egg, 1tbsp of matzo meal and salt and pepper to taste.

 

Potato Latke Mixture

Potato Latke Mixture

 

Combinations:

  1. Yukon Gold Potato
  2. Potato and Zucchini
  3. Potato and Sweet Potato
  4. Zucchini, Sweet Potato, and Parsnip

 

Heat oil about 1/2 inch deep in large skillet. When oil is sizzling hot, scoop about 2 tbsp of mixture with fork, letting liquid drain. Plop into frying pan and flatten with the fork to desired thickness (we like ours crispy, so I do them thin). If you like a bigger latke, use more mixture, and use less if you like a smaller one. Let fry for about 2 minutes until the underside is very golden brown. Using a large spatula, flip carefully (the plain potato flip are more stable than the mixes, so use a fork to help if you need to.) Fry until other side is done, then place on paper towel to drain the excess oil.  As you’re cooking, add more oil as necessary.

 

Serve immediately  with sour cream and applesauce. (you can cook ahead and keep in oven or reheat, but they won’t be as crispy-or as good.)

 

Happy Chanukah everyone!!

 

 

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