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Nothing says Hanukkah like crispy potato latkes. While there are many store bought options for these delicious potato pancakes, making them at home is easy and fun. Also, there are so many different ways to eat latkes why limit yourself to the one variety you can get in a store freezer.
Which Potatoes To Use For Latkes
You can use any kind of potato for latkes. We recommend a standard Russet potato for the basic recipe. You can also use Yukon Gold for a more buttery taste or a red potato if you want something a little sweeter. If you are feeling daring you can even mix a few of them and see what you get. Once you are comfortable with the process for making latkes feel free to try other potatoes as well. Tell us what you end up choosing. We love to hear about fun recipes that we have not tried yet.
How to Keep Potatoes From Turning brown
Once they are cut, potatoes begin to oxidize and turn brown. Russet potatoes start turning brown very quickly and other varieties a bit more slowly. The good news is even if they begin to turn brown they will not look brown once you fry them up so do not worry!
- Have a large bowl of cold water ready as you begin.
- Peel your potatoes and drop them into the water until you are ready to grate them.
- Grate the onions first and mix them in a large mixing bowl with the eggs and other ingredients.
- Grate the potatoes one by one and squeeze out as much water as you can.
- Mix them into the onion mixture to coat the potateos
Note: The brown will not affect the taste but a lot of people do not like the way it looks. Using these easy steps will buy you a bit of extra time with sparkling white potatoes as you begin to fry them.
How to Make Latkes Look Nice
To fry, grab a regular spoon out of your drawer and take a heaping spoonful of potato mixture. carefully empty the contents into a blob in the hot oil and use the back of your spoon to slightly flatten the blob into a potato patty.
How to Keep Latkes From Getting Soggy
After removing the latkes from the hot oil do not place them onto a plate with a paper towel on it to soak up the oil they will end up oily and soggy. When frying anything always use a rack to drain the food. This allows the excess oil to drip down off of your latke instead of being absorbed into a towel and then reabsorbed into the latke. It is a good idea to put paper towel under the rack to catch the oil just don't put the latke on the towel. We mean it. This was a capital offense in the old country.
Not to beat a dead horse here but if you are frying anything and do not have a rack you need to have one. Almost every recipe that requires pan frying or deep frying will need to cool the same way, on a rack. They are inexpensive and essential for keeping crispy fried foods crispy. Here is one that we like to use in our kitchen.
Get Creative With Your Crispy Potato Latke Toppings
Now is when potato latkes are the most fun...choosing what to put on top of them. There is nothing wrong with the classics like apple sauce, sour cream, or ketchup but there are so many other creative and exciting options. Try some of these latke toppings:
- Spicy - mix a squirt of sriracha into ½ cup of mayonnaise and dip away.
- Ranch dressing is good on any potato dish, no exception here.
- Pareve ranch dressing is a great substitute for it's diary cousin. We like this one.
- Latke Vinaigrette Drizzle - 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar, ½ cup olive oil.
- Barbeque sauce is a flavourful alternative to ketchup.
- Garlic Aioli - 1 cup mayonnaise, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, squirt of lemon.
- Sour Cream and Chives - 1 cup sour cream mixed with 3 tablespoon chives.
- Curry - 1 cup sour cream or mayonnaise, 1-2 teaspoon curry powder.
- Cheesy - 1 cup sour cream, 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese. (This one needs to be heated up in order for the cheese to melt).
Low Carb Latkes
We love latkes but sometime we want something a little lighter than potatoes. Luckily this recipe is extremely versatile and works really well with all sorts of veggies. You can completely replace the potatoes or use half potatoes and half other veggies, whatever you prefer. Some of our favorites include:
- Sweet Potatoes
- Riced Cauliflower
This list is not meant to be exhaustive, let us know how you have made your latkes creative and exciting. Did you make this recipe? Send us pictures! Let us know how yours turn out.
- 10 inch skillet
- 5 potatoes
- 1 onion large
- 3 egg large
- ⅓ cup flour optional
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- oil for frying
- Using a food processor fitted with the grater blade, grate onion and potatoes. This can also be done by hand. Keep potatoes in cold water while you work so they don't turn brown.
- Squeeze out as much excess water as possible.
- In a large bowl mix potato and onion mixture with eggs, flour, if using, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
- Heat an inch of oil in skillet. Lower flame so oil doesn't overheat and place a spoonful of the batter into sizzling oil and gently press to flatten with the back of the spoon. Fry for approximately 5 minutes then flip and cook the other side for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown.
- Drain excess oil from latkes on paper towels or brown paper bags. Continue cooking remaining batter, adding more oil as necessary.
- Serve with hot with applesauce or sour cream.