No Peel Potato Latkes for Hanukkah

0

 

Latkes3

Hanukkah falls really early this year, beginning Sunday, December 2nd (which is tomorrow!) and the holiday season starts with a bang. You know what that means… chocolate and latkes!  So, I want to share my easy no-peel latke recipe which, besides skipping the tedious and time consuming job of peeling potatoes, serves two purposes. The skin has much of the nutrition and leaving it on helps make the latkes extra crispy and tasty.  Warm latkes topped with applesauce and sour cream, are a family favorite. The only problem is, that no matter how many I make, they disappear! Feel free to try my No Peel Applesauce recipe as a great topper. Click HERE for the recipe

20151206_170305

Who wouldn’t love a celebration that lasts eight days and involves lighting pretty candles, exchanging gifts, playing games that involve chocolate coins and eating foods that have been fried in oil?  Once a year, latkes (and even doughnuts) which are fried in oil are the reigning treats.  So what is the significance of the oil?  Hanukkah, (Hanukah, Chanukkah or Chanukah depending on the transliteration) also known as the Festival of Lights, is an eight-day Jewish holiday in which candles are lit for eight nights to commemorate the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem which had been desecrated and a statue of Zeus built in it’s place back when Greek Gods were in favor (2nd century BCE). During the dedication a cask of oil which should have only been enough to burn the temple menorah for one night miraculously burned for eight, thus the eight days of celebration today incorporating candles, menorahs and oil.

Latkes15

Dreidel is a popular game played during Hanukkah.  Tradition has it that the reason the dreidel game is played is to commemorate a game devised by the Jews to camouflage the fact that they were studying Torah, which was outlawed at the time by the Ancient Greeks. The Jews would gather to study, posting a lookout to alert the group to the presence of soldiers. If soldiers were spotted, the Jews would hide their scrolls and start to spin tops, so it would look like they were gambling instead of studying Torah. My family loves playing dreidel for chocolate coins, and I have been collecting dreidels for over 20 years.  Every year I hunt for a new one to add to our collection. It’s getting harder to find something unique but I always find one.  Here is the new addition.

20181201_100827.jpg

The other ubiquitous Hanukkah treat is the chocolate coins given as gifts or used as collateral in dreidel. Gold are milk chocolate and silver are dark, so pick your favorite!

Latkes14

Latkes are easy to make but it does take a toll on your kitchen as the splattering oil makes a bit of a mess – but they are worth it!  There are many kinds of latkes, made with grated, shredded or mashed potatoes but my family prefers them extra crispy made with long thin strips of potato that allows the oil to  seep in through the middle, crisping them the whole way through.  Topped with applesauce and sour cream, they are hard to beat.

TIPS:  This recipe calls for potato only latkes but it’s fun to add other veggies or even fruit.  I often add shredded apple strips which makes them salty sweet.  You can also try grated or shredded carrots or any other root vegetable.  Get creative!

Latkes1

NO-PEEL POTATO LATKES
4 large potatoes
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
1/2 large or 1 whole small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsn lemon juice
2 Tbsn flour (any kind)
1 to 2 cups vegetable oil

Latkes11

  •  Grate unpeeled potatoes using a hand grater or food processor fitted with the grate attachment. You can use a blender but your latkes will be more like pancakes. Squeeze excess water from the grated potatoes with paper towels and add lemon juice right away to prevent browning.  Pour into a large bowl and add chopped onions.

Latkes10

  • Stir in the flour, baking powder, salt and eggs. It will not look like batter.

Latkes9

  • Heat half the oil in a heavy skillet on medium high to high until the oil is almost smoking. A cast iron pan works great as it holds the heat. Drop potato mixture by generous spoonfuls onto hot oil and flatten slightly with the tip of a wooden spoon. I try to poke a few holes so oil can bubble up through the middle.

Latkes7

  • Brown well on both sides, turning to accommodate hot spots in the pan.

Latkes8

  • Drain on paper towels.

Latkes2

  • Keep warm in a 250 degree oven covered loosely with aluminum foil.  Latkes can be made ahead and reheated in single layers in a 350 degree oven.

Latkes3

  • Serve plain or with applesauce and sour cream.

 

Potato Latkes

  • Servings: 2 dozen
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Latkes1

4 large potatoes
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
1/2 large or 1 whole small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsn lemon juice
2 Tbsn flour (any kind)
1 to 2 cups vegetable oil

  •  Grate unpeeled potatoes using a hand grater or food processor fitted with the grate attachment. You can use a blender but your latkes will be more like pancakes. Squeeze excess water from the grated potatoes with paper towels and add lemon juice right away to prevent browning. Pour into a large bowl and add chopped onions.
  • Stir in the flour, baking powder, salt and eggs.
  • Heat half the oil in a heavy skillet on medium high to high until the oil is almost smoking. A cast iron pan works great as it holds the heat. Drop potato mixture by generous spoonfuls onto hot oil and flatten slightly with the tip of a wooden spoon. I try to poke a few holes so oil can bubble up through the middle.
  • Brown well on both sides, turning to accommodate hot spots in the pan.
  • Drain on paper towels.
  • Keep warm in a 250 degree oven. Serve with applesauce and sour cream.

 

 

 

Latkes, Applesauce and Jelly Doughnuts…

11

Hanukkah begins tomorrow night. Who wouldn’t love a celebration that lasts eight days and involves lighting pretty candles, exchanging gifts, playing games that involve chocolate coins and eating foods that have been fried in oil?  Hanukkah features foods fried in oil in remembrance of the oil that miraculously burned for 8 days back in the day. The two most popular delicacies would be potato latkes and jelly doughnuts, also known as sufganiyot.  I also added a recipe for a really easy no-peel applesauce, since no latke is complete without (in my opinion).  Of course, a nice 6 braid challah is always a good idea too.  Click through for recipes and original posts.

Latkes3

Potato Latkes

Potato Latkes are the poster child for any Hanukkah celebration.  These are deliciously salty and crispy.  Top them with sour cream and applesauce for ultimate pleasure. You creative cooks can shred in apples or other root vegetables in place of some of the potatoes.  For gluten free, substitute any non-wheat flour.  Warning:  Make more than you think you need…

20151206_170305

Easy No-Peel Applesauce

If you have an abundance of apples or just like to make things from scratch, here is an easy recipe for apple sauce.  If you have made apple sauce before, you know that the most time consuming part is peeling the apples.  Well this recipe breaks all the rules – no peeling!  No kidding…

Sufganiyot6

Sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts)

Dough fried in oil, filled with jelly and sprinkled with powdered sugar – need I say more?  Just do it.

Challah23

World’s Best Challah

This is the real deal.  It’s a six braid challah that is always a crowd pleaser.  It also makes the best french toast the next morning if you are lucky enough to have any left over…

Latkes15

Wishing you the happiest of holidays! May the best dreidel win… -J

Sufganiyot (Jelly Doughnuts)

2

Sufganiyot6

OMG!  I see why sufganiyot is all the rage in Israel during Hanukkah! Fried dough still warm from the pan, filled with yummy jam and sprinkled with powdered sugar, is pretty hard to beat. I tend to stay away from fried foods, however, on Hanukkah when it’s traditional to eat foods fried in oil, I make an exception. I recently posted a recipe for yummy Potato Latkes, which are a classic Hanukkah treat, in case you prefer savory over sweet.   I made sufganiyot quite a few years ago, following a recipe I got from Temple Emanu-El when Eric and I were taking a Mommy and Me Tot Shabbat class. We had a lot of fun making doughnuts and I remember it being a fun kid activity (the jelly and powdered sugar part anyway).  That was quite a while ago, since Eric is now turning 26!  I know the recipe is around here somewhere and I will probably find it when I’m no longer looking for it, such is the way of misplaced objects which seem to turn up right in front of your nose.  I’m fully expecting to stumble upon this recipe within the next couple of days.

Sufganiyot7

Since I couldn’t find my recipe, I turned to “The Mile End Cookbook – Redefining Jewish Comfort Food from Hash to Hamantaschen” given to me by my friend, Karin, for my birthday.  It’s a great cookbook filled with recipes for all kinds of dishes I have heard of (mostly from my Mother in Law) but never knew what they were, like Kasha Varnishkes and Kreplach.  By the way, for those left wondering, they are a noodle/grain dish and meat dumplings, respectively.  “The Mile End Cookbook” offers an easy recipe for Jelly Doughnuts, called Sufganiyot in Hebrew.  These doughnuts are light and delicious but not too sweet, although that is partly determined by the type and quantity of the jelly that is used.  I used a Santa Rosa Plum jam that I made last year from plums from my garden, which is a blend of sweet and tart that offsets the sugar nicely.  A strawberry or grape jelly will yield a sweeter result.

Sufganiyot16

TIPS: I used a bread maker set on the dough setting to make the dough but I have provided directions for both ways below.  This recipe makes 2 dozen or more doughnuts.  I made half and refrigerated the other half but it never rose quite well enough. I am not an expert baker though, so perhaps there are tips on saving dough that I don’t know.  Unless you are making for a large crowd, I would recommend halving the recipe.

Sufganiyot15

SUFGANIYOT

4 Tbsn instant yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
1/2 cup sugar
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp ground nutmeg
5 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp kosher salt
1-2 cups vegetable oil
1/2 cup jelly
1/4 cup powdered sugar
pinch coarse salt

DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING DOUGH USING HAND METHOD:

  • Add the first 6 ingredients to a large bowl and stir to combine.  Add the flour and salt and stir (or mix with your hands) until the dough comes together (it will still be wet and sticky).  On a well-floured surface, knead and shape the dough into a thick disk, transfer it to a bowl that’s greased with oil and let it rest in a warm, draft free area for 1 hour.

DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING DOUGH USING BREAD MAKER:

  •  Add the water(warmer than lukewarm but not hot), butter and eggs to the bread maker.  Then add salt, flour, sugar and yeast in that order.  Turn the bread maker to dough setting (which is usually about 20 minutes or so).  Let dough rise another half hour but watch to make sure it doesn’t hit the lid.

Sufganiyot8

FOR DOUGHNUTS:

  • On a well-floured surface, flatten the dough and roll it out into a 1/4 inch thick disk (Like a really thick pizza dough).

Sufganiyot10

  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and brush with oil.

Sufganiyot9

  • Using a 2 inch round cookie cutter or juice glass, cut out as many circles of dough as you can.

Sufganiyot11

  • Transfer circles to cookie sheet, leaving room for expansion. Collect the dough trimmings and form them into another ball, roll it out again and cut more circles.  Repeat until dough is used.

Sufganiyot12

  • Let the dough circles rest in a warm, draft free area for 1/2 hour.

Sufganiyot14

  • Heat about 1 inch of oil in a high sided skillet over medium high heat until very hot but not smoking (365 to 375 degrees).  Working in batches, fry the doughnuts until they’re golden brown on one side.

Sufganiyot13

  • Flip them over to fry the other side. (2 or 3 minutes total)

Sufganiyot4

  • Transfer to papertowels to drain.

Sufganiyot5

  • Put jelly in a pastry or Ziploc bag with a small hole cut from one corner.  When cool enough to handle, insert a small knife (I used a chopstick) into the side of each doughnut and more it around to make room in the center for jelly.

Sufganiyot2

  • Insert the tip of the bag in the opening and pipe in as much jelly as possible. If you have a cake decorating tip you can insert that in the hole before adding the jelly to the bag for easier piping.

Sufganiyot3

  • Repeat with the remaining doughnuts.

Sufganiyot1

  • Dust the doughnuts generously with powdered sugar and a pinch of coarse salt.

Sufganiyot15

Sufganiyot (Jelly Doughnuts)

  • Servings: 24
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Sufganiyot6

4 Tbsn instant yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
1/2 cup sugar
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp ground nutmeg
5 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp kosher salt
1-2 cups vegetable oil
1/2 cup jelly
1/4 cup powdered sugar
pinch coarse salt

DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING DOUGH USING HAND METHOD:

  • Add the first 6 ingredients to a large bowl and stir to combine.  Add the flour and salt and stir (or mix with your hands) until the dough comes together (it will still be wet and sticky).  On a well-floured surface, knead and shape the dough into a thick disk, transfer it to a bowl that’s greased with oil and let it rest in a warm, draft free area for 1 hour.

DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING DOUGH USING BREAD MAKER:

  •  Add the water(warmer than lukewarm but not hot), butter and eggs to the bread maker.  Then add salt, flour, sugar and yeast in that order.  Turn the bread maker to dough setting (which is usually about 20 minutes or so).  Let dough rise another half hour but watch to make sure it doesn’t hit the lid.

FOR DOUGHNUTS:

  • On a well-floured surface, flatten the dough and roll it out into a 1/4 inch thick disk (Like a really thick pizza dough).
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and brush with oil.
  • Using a 2 inch round cookie cutter or juice glass, cut out as many circles of dough as you can.
  • Transfer circles to cookie sheet, leaving room for expansion. Collect the dough trimmings and form them into another ball, roll it out again and cut more circles.  Repeat until dough is used.
  • Let the dough circles rest in a warm, draft free area for 1/2 hour.
  • Heat about 1 inch of oil in a high sided skillet over medium high heat until very hot but not smoking (365 to 375 degrees).  Working in batches, fry the doughnuts until they’re golden brown on one side.
  • Flip them over to fry the other side. (2 or 3 minutes total)
  • Transfer to papertowels to drain.
  • Put jelly in a pastry or Ziploc bag with a small hole cut from one corner.  When cool enough to handle, insert a small knife (I used a chopstick) into the side of each doughnut and more it around to make room in the center for jelly.
  • Insert the tip of the bag in the opening and pipe in as much jelly as possible. If you have a cake decorating tip you can insert that in the hole before adding the jelly to the bag for easier piping.
  • Repeat with the remaining doughnuts.
  • Dust the doughnuts generously with powdered sugar and a pinch of coarse salt.

 

Happy Hanukkah! Potato Latkes

5

Latkes3

Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel!  You know what that means… It’s Hanukkah!  Who wouldn’t love a celebration that lasts eight days and involves lighting pretty candles, exchanging gifts, playing games that involve chocolate coins and eating foods that have been fried in oil?  Once a year, latkes (and even doughnuts) which are fried in oil are the reigning treats.  Latkes, crispy and salty potato pancakes topped with applesauce and sour cream, are a family favorite. The only problem is, that no matter how many I make, they disappear! So what is the significance of the oil?  Hanukkah, (Hanukah, Chanukkah or Chanukah depending on the transliteration) also known as the Festival of Lights, is an eight-day Jewish holiday in which candles are lit for eight nights to commemorate the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem which had been desecrated and a statue of Zeus built in it’s place back when Greek Gods were in favor (2nd century BCE). During the dedication a cask of oil which should have only been enough to burn the temple menorah for one night miraculously burned for eight, thus the eight days of celebration today incorporating candles, menorahs and oil.

Latkes15

Dreidel is a popular game played during Hanukkah.  Tradition has it that the reason the dreidel game is played is to commemorate a game devised by the Jews to camouflage the fact that they were studying Torah, which was outlawed at the time by the Ancient Greeks. The Jews would gather to study, posting a lookout to alert the group to the presence of soldiers. If soldiers were spotted, the Jews would hide their scrolls and start to spin tops, so it would look like they were gambling instead of studying Torah. My family loves playing dreidel, and I have been collecting dreidels for over 20 years.  Every year I hunt for a new dreidel to add to our collection. It’s getting harder to find something unique but I always find one.  Here is this year’s new addition.

Latkes16

The other ubiquitous Hanukkah treat is the chocolate coins given as gifts or used as collateral in dreidel. Gold are milk chocolate and silver are dark, so pick your favorite!

Latkes14

Latkes are easy to make but it does take a toll on your kitchen as the splattering oil makes a bit of a mess – but they are worth it!  There are many kinds of latkes, made with grated, shredded or mashed potatoes but my family prefers them extra crispy made with long thin strips of potato that allows the oil to  seep in through the middle, crisping them the whole way through.  Topped with applesauce and sour cream, they are hard to beat.

TIPS: I like to keep the skins on the potatoes for two reasons:  the skin has much of the nutrition and it helps make the latkes extra crispy.  I would recommend scrubbing the skins and then drying them with a towel to remove any remaining residue.  Of course, you can always peel them if you want but it’s not necessary.

Latkes1

LATKES
4 large potatoes
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
1/2 large or 1 whole small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsn lemon juice
2 Tbsn flour (any kind)
1 to 2 cups vegetable oil

Latkes11

  •  Grate unpeeled potatoes using a hand grater or food processor fitted with the grate attachment. You can use a blender but your latkes will be more like pancakes. Squeeze excess water from the grated potatoes with paper towels and add lemon juice right away to prevent browning.

Latkes10

  • Stir in the flour, baking powder, salt and eggs. It will not look like batter.

Latkes9

  • Heat half the oil in a heavy skillet on medium high to high until the oil is almost smoking. A cast iron pan works great as it holds the heat. Drop potato mixture by generous spoonfuls onto hot oil and flatten slightly with the tip of a wooden spoon. I try to poke a few holes so oil can bubble up through the middle.

Latkes7

  • Brown well on both sides, turning to accommodate hot spots in the pan.

Latkes8

  • Drain on paper towels.

Latkes2

  • Keep warm in a 250 degree oven covered loosely with aluminum foil.  Latkes can be made ahead and reheated in single layers in a 350 degree oven.

Latkes3

  • Serve plain or with applesauce and sour cream.

 

Potato Latkes

  • Servings: 2 dozen
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Latkes1

4 large potatoes
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
1/2 large or 1 whole small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsn lemon juice
2 Tbsn flour (any kind)
1 to 2 cups vegetable oil

  •  Grate unpeeled potatoes using a hand grater or food processor fitted with the grate attachment. You can use a blender but your latkes will be more like pancakes. Squeeze excess water from the grated potatoes with paper towels and add lemon juice right away to prevent browning.
  • Stir in the flour, baking powder, salt and eggs.
  • Heat half the oil in a heavy skillet on medium high to high until the oil is almost smoking. A cast iron pan works great as it holds the heat. Drop potato mixture by generous spoonfuls onto hot oil and flatten slightly with the tip of a wooden spoon. I try to poke a few holes so oil can bubble up through the middle.
  • Brown well on both sides, turning to accommodate hot spots in the pan.
  • Drain on paper towels.
  • Keep warm in a 250 degree oven. Serve with applesauce and sour cream.