Latkes, Potato Pancakes...

Latkes, Potato Pancakes...
Latkes known, as little potato pancakes are a traditional Hanukkah food, serving as a reminder of the food hurriedly prepared for the Maccabees as they went into battle, along with the oil they are fried in as a reminder of the miraculous oil. Other traditional foods contain cheese to celebrate Judahs’ victory.
Hanukkah originated when Judah the Maccabee and his followers reclaimed the temple in the village of Modi'in from Syrian King Antiochus IV. The temple was cleansed and prepared for rededication. The Hebrew word Hanukkah means "dedication."  You will also see this holiday spelled “Chanukkah” due to different translations and customs. When the sacred temple Menorah (candelabra) was relit, there was only enough sacred oil to burn for one day. Yet, according to tradition, the oil miraculously lasted eight days until more purified oil could be found. In remembrance, a candle is lit each of the eight days of Hanukkah.

Latkes or Potato Pancakes are great any time of the year and are limitless to your creativity.  
Try these two recipes and let us know what you think.

Sweet Potato Latkes made by Meal Makers Inc.
Sweet Potato Latkes
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 latkes)
  • 1 pounds Sweet Potatoes
  • 1 small onion (about 6 ounces), peeled
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch ground Cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1. Peel and par-boil the potatoes. Shred the sweet potatoes and onion using the shredding blade of a food processor.  
2. Combine egg, flour, salt, and pepper in a small bowl, stirring with a spatula in a medium size bowl.  Add egg the potatoes to the mixture and, stir well to combine.
3. Heat a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil to pan, swirling to coat. Using a tablespoon, make patties and add to the pan. Cook 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Remove latkes from pan; keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and remaining potato mixture.
Serve with sour cream or apple sauce.
Cheese Latkes
Serving Size: About 15 Silver Dollar size
  • 1 potato Idaho small, boiled (3 -4 oz) peeled 
  • 1 tbsp butter 
  • 1/2 lb farmer cheese 
  • 2 tbsp flour 
  • 2 egg yolks large
  • (see note for sweet version)
  • 2 egg whites large 
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar or salt 
  • 1 tsp salt  
  • 1/2 tsp pepper white 
  • Canola oil for frying 
  •  sour cream 
  • apple sauce
1. In a 2 quart bowl with a flat bottom mash the hot peeled boiled potato, salt, pepper and butter, using a hand masher. Add the farmer cheese and mash some more until uniform. Then add egg yolks and mix smooth. (If you are making the sweet version, add the sugar, cinnamon and vanilla along with the flour.) Add the flour and mix smooth and uniform. 
2.Beat the egg whites to soft peaks, add the cream of tartar or salt, and continue beating till medium peaks. 
3.Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the cheese mixture to soften it. Then fold the remaining egg whites into the cheese mixture. This should give you a mixture that is firm enough to fry.
3.Heat canola oil frying pan to 325 F.  Drop rounded tablespoons of the batter onto the pan, using 2 tablespoons, one to lift and one to push off the batter.   When a brown and crispy, turn it over gently using a spatula and a fork, and gently pat down the top of the pancake to spread it a little.
Serve with sour cream or apple sauce.
Note: Sweet version. 
You can also make these sweet. Add 1-2 tbsp sugar and a few drops of vanilla extract, and a shake or two of cinnamon after the yolks.