Tue 20 Dec 2011
Is it just me, or is there nothing better than fried potatoes? They’re great anytime of year, in any permutation—French fries in summer, hashbrowns in fall, home fries in spring… Any time, any style, by any name—I love ‘em! But, latkes at Hanukkah are the best!
Marty and I made latkes the other night—it was the only way to get the kids to come home! I made this quick shot, of one latke, sizzling away.
Super Crispy Latkes
This recipe is from Delicious by Design, by Rob Sugar. My shot at the top of this post was for that book and was styled by Lisa Cherkasky. Rob says, “The secret is big shreds of potato loosely held together so the oil bubbles all around it and through it.”
Makes 24 Four-inch latkes
5 lbs Russet potatoes (about 10 orange-sized)
1 large onion, chopped to small dice
3 Tbs flour
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder (optional)
3 scallions, green tops (optional)
2 cups vegetable oil for frying
Peel potatoes and grate using the largest holes of a grater. Line a bowl with a clean kitchen tea towel draped over the rim and add potatoes. Wrap the potatoes in the tea towel and squeeze out as much moisture as you can. (You may need to use a second towel—there might be more than a cup of liquid.) Discard liquid and put potatoes back in bowl.
Add the diced onion, and sprinkle flour, salt, and baking powder (it’s optional, so don’t worry if you don’t have any) over the potatoes. Beat the eggs until blended and add to the mixture. Stir to thoroughly integrate all the elements. Let sit for 15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Chop the scallions into 1/4-inch pieces, discarding white bottoms. Add to the mixture just before cooking and stir thoroughly.
In a 12-inch nonstick frying pan, pour oil to a depth of 1 inch. Heat until oil reaches 350°. Add a heaping serving spoon of potato mixture, and press flat into the oil with back of spoon. Each latke should be about 4 inches in diameter. Cook no more than 6 at a time in the pan. The latkes will bubble vigorously. Leave them alone to cook, but after a minute or so, shake the pan gently to ensure they aren’t sticking.
When latkes are brown on the edges, about 2 minutes, turn them over using a spatula and a fork. After another minute or so, the latkes will be golden brown. Move them to a baking tray lined with paper towels to drain. Put the tray in a 200° oven to keep warm until ready to serve.
Serve with applesauce and sour cream.