Today is the first day of Hanukkah and to celebrate I always make potato latkes. When I was growing up, we celebrated all of the Christian and Jewish holidays. Looking back, we were so lucky. We got to celebrate and take part in so many different and beautiful traditions and holidays. One of my all time favorites was my mom making us latkes for our big Hanukkah dinner. My mom makes the best latkes I have ever eaten. Now as a grown up with a family of my own, I still do the same thing. We rock the Christmas tree and the menorah.
I really do not like to fry anything in my house, but this is the one exception that I happily make. I think that latkes taste best as soon as they are finished cooking, but it is not always the easiest way to have them. So I make them ahead of time, lay them out in a single layer with paper towels and reheat them in a 350 degree oven until they are heated through. I serve them with sour cream and my homemade apple sauce.
5 pounds Yukon Gold or Russet potatoes
2 Tablespoons flour
salt and pepper to taste
Have your handy assistant peel all of the potatoes for you.
Grate the potatoes and onion. You can use a food processor for this, but I like to do this by hand.
This is the most important step. You need really dry potatoes to make crispy latkes. I spread the potatoes and onions on a hand towel.
Roll up the potatoes and squeeze out as much water as you can.
Put the potatoes and onions in a bowl. Add the eggs, flour, salt and pepper. This needs a lot of salt and pepper. My mom adds a little cayenne pepper to hers, but I do not, the kids do not like spicy.
Heat a saute pan with vegetable oil, about 3/4 of an inch high. Heat the oil over medium to medium high heat. Make sure that the oil is hot enough before you put a latke. If the oil is too cold, you will just get a greasy latke, not a crispy one. I make a small one first and taste it to make sure that I have enough salt and pepper before I finish cooking off the rest. Cook them until they are brown and crispy on both sides.
Line a pan with paper towels to soak up the oil. I lay them out and add layers of paper towels. Serve with sour cream and apple sauce.