Every year I look forward to Chanukah so I have an excuse to make latkes. They are simple and delicious, and for me, completely evocative of the holiday season.
6 medium russet potatoes
5 Tbsp. flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt + more to taste
Pepper to taste
Extra virgin olive oil or other oil for frying
Grate the onion and the potatoes, drain all of the liquid from them, and add them to a bowl. The drier the better! You can use your hands to wring and press out the liquid, but a clean, non-fuzzy kitchen towel works the best. Add the flour, salt, and pepper to taste.
Heat a deep cast-iron pan with about 1/4 inch of olive oil over medium heat. Test the heat of the oil by dropping in a small piece of potato. The oil is ready once the potato cooks quickly to a golden brown with out burning. Adjust the heat as necessary.
Grab a small handful of the grated potato mixture and squeeze tightly forming a disc-like patty similar to a thin burger. You will have to squeeze the liquid out or it won’t stick together. Add patties a few at a time to the hot oil. They should become golden brown fairly quickly, but still have time for the inside portion to cook.
Pull them out with a spatula and set them on a plate with a paper towel on it to drain. Adjust the heat to achieve the desired outer crispiness and inner softness.
Serve with homemade applesauce and/or sour cream.
4 cups of apples – pink ladies, gala, granny smith, other local apples
1/2 cup sugar or to taste
1 cinnamon stick
4-5 whole cloves
Cook in a pot with a little water, the cinnamon stick, and cloves. Cook covered for 20 minutes until the apples begin to fall apart.