13 December 2007

Happy Hanukkah

It had been years, literally, since I had last made latkes for Hanukkah but this year, with the first night during my last week of classes I felt that I needed to do something to celebrate. My last latke experience involved 4 pounds of potatoes, a box grater and wounded knuckles but this time my 3-in-1 kitchen miracle machine was available for assistance. I consulted both my mum and a recipe in the Washington Post and then realized I had absolutely no idea how much to make for dinner for 4. We would have a salad as well as there had to be some greenery to accompany the fried potatoes.* Two pounds sounded like it would be enough but then when I actually looked at the number of potatoes involved, I changed my mind. 3 pounds of potatoes worked well for dinner for 4- but I will give the recipe here for 1 pound as you can easily double, triple or even quadruple it. The traditional way to serve latkes is with apple sauce and sour cream, although they are really good on their own too. I hope you like them.- we certainly did.

*Hmmmm... you might be saying- isn't this supposed to be the healthy food blog? In defense of my fried dinner here is what I will say- Hanukkah only comes around once a year and I don't think latkes would be worth eating if I tried to bake them or make them with Pam (the thought makes me shudder). I certainly hope the occasional fried treat won't be the death of me

1 lb. potatoes, shredded on a box grater or with a food processor
1 egg, beaten well
1 heaping tablespoon flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 grated onion (optional)
canola oil for frying

-Heat oven to 350F. Prep a large sheet pan with wire wracks to put the latkes on.

-Get a pan (or two) ready for frying on the stove. Add a bit more than 1/8 in. oil to the pan(s). Heat over medium high.

-Put the shredded potato in a clean kitchen towel and wring out to remove the excess water. Put the potato in a large bowl.

-Add the egg mixture, onion (with its juice) and flour to the potatoes and mix well.

-When the oil it hot (test it by dropping in one potato shred- if it starts bubbling immediately it's ready, if it just floats there the oil is not hot enough) drop in the lakes, about 1/4 cup of potato mixture for each, and flatten with the back of a spatula.

-Fry latkes until golden brown (this shout take 3-4 minutes per side) and flip. Once browned on both sides, remove from the pan and place on the wire racks. Move the sheet pan to the oven to keep the latkes warm. Keep this up until you've used all the potato mixture, adding more oil to the pan when it runs low.

-Serve the latkes with sour cream and apple sauce.

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