Some like it crispy and some like it thick- which way do you like them? Oh, you want to know what I’m talking about? Potato latkes 🙂 I had so much fun testing out different ways to make potato latkes. yes, I have made them before but they tended to be more gooey.
First, let me tell you a bit of a story… far away truly, unless you live in Latvia it really is far away…my father’s ancestors lived. My grandfather, Kirsh (sounds like Chris) was chosen as the most likely to succeed in the family to come to America all by himself as a young man. His family pooled probably all of their money and sent him. We did not know many details of his family as we were growing up. Fortunately my cousin, David, my niece Ashley and others have researched and figured out that we are Jewish! So it is my duty then to learn how to make yummy crispy potato Latkes don’t you agree?
One thing I learned is that latkes were not always made from potatoes. It depended on where my ancestors lived as to what they used.
Do you ever flip through magazine while you are waiting in line at the grocery store? I did some time ago and came across a recipe for Potato Latkes using potato starch instead of flour. That’s is all I remember about it but the purpose of the potato starch was to keep the exterior of the latkes crisp.
And by using potato starch -they are gluten-free! Of course if you don’t have potato starch you can use flour, panko bread crumbs or cassava flour.
First, start with a starchy potato, which would be a russet potato. If you can get a kennebec potato, bingo! I have rarely seen a kennebec potato except maybe in a gourmet grocery in St. Helena. Kennebec potatoes are used in the restaurant industry to make french fries because they are high in starch so the fries are crispy! We can make do with russet’s ok?
The most important thing to do so that you don’t end up with a gooey potato latkes is once they are grated to drain them by wringing them out in a clean dishtowel. It is fun to add some colorful veggies to the latkes too. They don’t just have to be potatoes, right?
For these, I added shredded brussel sprouts and grated carrots. Any vegetable you use, if it has any moisture in it, it should be added to the bowl of grated potatoes and drained in a dishtowel. If you are making these for Hanukkah blue and white are the traditional colors so, maybe purple potatoes with russets? Just a guess, I don’t know of naturally blue food.
Christmas brunch add in grated beets and brussel sprouts or grated broccoli. Easter, carrot and something green, like the brussel sprouts or broccoli. See how fun these can be? Also, keep the grated thickness of your veggies the same size. I kept the latkes small, a heaping soup spoon sized for each latke. If you like yours thicker don’t flatten them. I tapped them down once in the hot cast iron skillet to flatten it. If you are making these for a big crowd make them on a flat griddle so that you can cook a lot of them at once.
Once you make the latkes eat them as quickly as possible. Eat them with sour cream ‘n chives or with applesauce, or hot sauce 🙂
Traditional Latkes have grated onion, I tried minced garlic, onion or just dried parsley, sprinkle cayenne pepper and the plainer latkes I liked the best. Ok, my friends, try them and let me know which techniques you have used to keep them crispy and which other veggies you have tried, ok?
Oh, ps I thought you would enjoy seeing a couple of pics that are behind the scenes, what is going on outside of the focused area! Enjoy!
Crispy Latkes that are made with russet potatoes and other veggies for a colorful addition to your brunch menu.
- 1-1/2 cups russet potato(s), peeled, grated 12 ounce size potato
- 3/4 cup total choice of: carrots, brussel sprouts, beets, grated
- 1/3 cup grated yellow onion, (optional)
- 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 eggs
- 3 tablespoons potato starch* *can use panko bread crumbs or flour
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 2 pinches cayenne pepper
- 2-3 tablespoons Avocado or mild flavored olive oil
garnish options: Sour Cream with chives/scallions or applesauce
Mix grated potato and other veggies in mixing bowl add kosher salt stir well,
put grated veggies onto a clean dishtowel, twist the dishtowel ends together and wring the liquid out of the potato and veggies, do this twice
Put wrung out potato and veggies in dry mixing bowl, add eggs, potato starch and seasonings, mix well.
Heat oil in cast iron skillet over medium high heat; when skillet hot, put heaping soup spoon sized (3 tablespoon size) portions of latkes on hot skillet, press down latke, turn once golden crispy approximately 2 minutes, turn on other side, once golden remove from skillet.
Add more oil to skillet as needed to fry all latkes, be sure oil is hot before adding latkes to skillet.
serve immediately. Enjoy!
Tip: be sure potatoes and other veggies are grated same thickness. Can use large size grater on food processor.
If using pre-sliced brussel sprouts this works because there is very little moisture in the brussel sprouts.
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