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by George Erdosh
After researching and testing many old and new latke recipes, here is one that takes the prize, having the best combination of ingredients and best cooking technique for excellent latkes. Reusing starch from the drained grated potatoes makes latke firm and adding baking powder produces airy texture.
- 700 g (1 ½ lb) firm cooking potatoes
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp fresh-ground black pepper
- 1/3 tsp baking powder
- 2 Tbsp matzo meal
- 2 large eggs
- 30 g (1 oz or ¼ cup) onion, grated
- Vegetable oil, butter or mixture
- Finely grate potatoes. Line a large bowl with a kitchen towel and dump potatoes in center. Enfold potatoes in towel, and squeeze and twist to remove as much liquid into the bowl as possible. Set potatoes aside and let starch settle from potato liquid for 10 minutes.
- In the meantime combine salt, pepper, baking powder and matzo meal in a second bowl, add eggs and beat lightly.
- Carefully drain potato liquid but retain potato starch that settled to the bottom. Add this starch to the eggs with the grated onion and potatoes and mix well.
- Heat a large, heavy fry pan over medium heat for half a minute and add a small amount of fat (oil, butter or mixture) to coat bottom. With a large spoon, drop several lemon-size latke dough into the pan and flatten with spatula. Brown lightly on one side, then flip over to brown the second side. Continue with rest of latke dough. Keep them ready to serve on a plate in a warm oven. Latkes will not keep very long and lose a lot on reheating. Serve them very fresh.
You may serve potato latkes keeping the sour cream and applesauce tradition, or use any of your favorite toppings, such as marmalade, jam, yogurt, honey or sweet syrup. For a festive table, provide at least three choices of toppings.
visit George Erdosh at www.howfoodswork.com
from the December 2000 Edition of the Jewish Magazine
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