Classic Latkes Recipe: You Can't Have Hanukkah Without This Traditional Potato Latkes Recipe by Meredith Schneider
What is Hanukkah without latkes? But why do we eat latkes during Hanukkah? Latkes are generally consumed on Hanukkah to commemorate the miracle of the oil lasting eight days in the story of the event Hanukkah commemorates, the rededication of the Holy Temple. The oil lasting eight days in this story is also why we have eight candles to light on a menorah.
Sweet foods are also eaten on Hanukkah. Doughnuts, or sufganiyot as they’re known in Hebrew, are a favorite treat my kids enjoy during Hanukkah. Dusted with lots of powered sugar, of course!
My favorite go-to source for Jewish holiday recipes is Tori Avey. I found her years ago when I was looking for a recipe to teach myself how to make challah for Shabbat. Now I can't get enough of all of her amazing recipes. Enjoy this classic potato latke recipe and let me know how you like it! For more details and cooking tips for this recipe, visit ToriaAvey.com.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
- 2 1/2 pounds potatoes (I prefer Yukon Gold), shredded
- 1 large onion, grated
- 3/4 cup matzo meal or bread crumbs
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 1 tablespoons potato starch, or more if needed
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, or more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 1/2 cups avocado oil, peanut oil or grapeseed oil, for frying (or more if needed)
- 1/4 cup schmaltz, optional (see note below)
Here's how to make it:
- Drain the shredded potato in a colander. Place drained potato shreds and grated onion in the center of a clean tea towel or multiple layers of cheesecloth. Wrap the shreds up in the cloth, twisting the cloth to secure, and squeeze firmly to remove excess liquid. Pour the potato and onion into a clean, dry bowl. Stir the shreds with a fork to make sure the onion is evenly mixed throughout the potato.
- In a skillet, add oil to reach 1/8 inch. If using the schmaltz, add 1/4 cup to the oil. Heat oil to 365 degrees F.
- Using a fork, combine the matzo meal, eggs, potato starch, salt and pepper into the potato and onion shreds.
- Scoop up 3 tablespoons of the potato mixture and shape into a tightly compacted disk. Place the disk carefully into the hot oil. (The oil should sizzle, but not pop, when the latke hits it. If the oil jumps wildly or smokes, it's too hot. If it only bubbles weakly, the oil is not hot enough.)
- Fry in batches of four to five latkes at a time (don’t crowd the pan) for 2 to 3 minutes per side until brown and crispy. Remove the latkes and place them on a wire cooling rack to drain.
Note: Schmaltz is rendered chicken or goose fat used for frying, particularly identified with Jewish cuisine.
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Matzo Meal $3 & Up
Bread Crumbs $3 & Up
Potato Starch $3 & Up
Avocado Oil $6 & Up
Grapeseed Oil $6 & Up
Peanut Oil $4 & Up
Schmaltz $7 & Up
Cooling Racks $6 & Up
Thermometers $4 & Up
Cheesecloth $4 & Up
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