Monday, 10 December 2012

Sour Cream or Apple Sauce?

It's yet another round of firsts in the Katz Kennedy household.  This time it revolves around a baby-friendly Chanukah, which we celebrated the first night of this past Saturday night.  Like all other Jewish holidays Chanukah begins at sundown which at this time of year is also thankfully baby-friendly.  Sundown these days takes place around 4pm.  Seriously.  It makes even just attempting to stay up until 9pm a challenge, thus making me officially old (as if I hadn't confirmed this status already).

A few years ago I attempted to make my husband potato latkes for the first time.  Problem was, as I had never made them before I used a pre-packaged version that only required a bit of oil and an egg.  BIG mistake.  He thought they were just an oily mess, and really, well they were.

This year I wised up, emailed an old friend and got her mama's recipe.  Adapting it slightly to include sweet potato and grated onion (verses chopped) these latkes came out crispy on the outside, soft on the inside and absolutely delicious!  So much so that Nell's portion was only slightly smaller than mine, and I think we all could have carried on eating several more had we not already demolished the stack!

It was then time to ask Nell the age old question; sour cream or apple sauce?  We thought her response was quite clear.

As we carry on living out Nell's first year, and our first year of creating our family traditions I find myself overwhelmed with emotion and excitement like that I've never really experienced before.  Helping to create Nell's memories and childhood traditions has made each small little detail more significant and magical than I could have ever imagined.  I officially declare 'baby's first Chanukah' to be a hit, and I'm sure I will feel the urge to make these latkes several more times before the 8 days is up!

Here's my adaptation to what already was a delicious recipe by Mama Siegel.  Whether you're Jewish or not, if you like hash browns I'm pretty sure these crispy little guys are for you!

Potato Latkes

2 cups grated raw white potato
1 medium size sweet potato, grated
1 large white onion, grated
2 eggs
1/4 tsp baking powder
11/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp matzo meal


Grate your potatoes and onion and mix together.  Incorporate all other ingredients and mix once more.  Drain any excess liquid, place in an airtight container and refrigerate until you're ready to make and serve your potato latkes (as they will need to be served immediately after cooking).

Heat a heavy bottom frying pan with enough vegetable or sunflower oil to coat the bottom.  Oil should be 1cm deep so latkes will get a good fry.

When the oil is hot, scoop walnut-size spoonfulls of your batter, pressing out any excess liquid as you form into a patty and place into the pan to fry.  Flip when you've achieved a golden brown with crispy edges- this will take a bit longer for the first few but will then get quicker the more batches you do.  Drain off extra oil by placing latkes on paper towels and into a warm oven- this will help your latkes stay crispy and warm while waiting for the rest to cook.

Serve with sour cream and apple sauce and decide for yourself.

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