Two thousand years ago, a group of Jews rebelled against their Greek occupiers and reclaimed the Second Temple in ancient Jerusalem. Later, some rabbis added an apocryphal story to the incident of the oil lasting, as Adam Sandler would say, eight crazy nights. Today, we remember all of this by eating fried potato pancakes called latkes.
It might sound like a stretch, but hey, it makes more sense than a human-sized rabbit laying eggs at Easter, or someone wearing Tim Allen cosplay delivering gifts to every kid on the same night. For flew around the world with the magical reindeer. ,
Traditionally, latkes are made with grated potatoes, onions, flour or starch, and an egg to bind it all together. But chef and professional Jewish sandwich slinger, Jeremy Umansky, is looking to change that. he’s making his latkes with right now potato.
They tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat
Umansky is the founder and chef of The Larder Delicatessen & Bakery in Cleveland, Ohio – a 2019 James Beard nominee for Best New Restaurant in America. food and wine He was dubbed “The Daily Prophet” and a year later, he co-authored “The Daily Prophet”.Cozy AlchemyA remarkable deep dive into the umami possibilities within Japanese fermentation.
This is all to say that Umansky isn’t shy when it comes to experimenting. So it’s no surprise that he’s trying to make latke sundaes a thing. Yes, you read that right. Hang on. Sundays.
Which is why mixing fried potatoes with ice cream might sound a little strange on paper.
Potato latkes derive from the Eastern European, Ashkenazi Jewish tradition. Traditionally, you grate some potatoes and an onion, sprinkle in black pepper, mix them with some flour or starch and an egg to give it a firm consistency before slapping handfuls of the mixture onto an oiled skillet. Can tie together Once they’re nicely browned on each side, the focus turns to the age-old argument: Would you rather serve this with applesauce or sour cream? But these days, home cooks get creative and will throw together everything from pizza toppings to shakshuka-style eggs on a latke. I’ll also add some bananas and fried black chickpeas To Make Hanging Petacones,
However you hang out, the experience is generally a savage one. But why not go sweet? Hanukkah falls into the “they tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat” category of Jewish holidays. So really, we can do whatever we want. That’s the mindset that Chef Umansky brings to his latke sundaes, and that’s why he recommends the potato-only approach.
making lattes sweeter
It all started when Umansky wanted to make a latke which was Only potato. “We didn’t want anything else in there,” he says. “No eggs, no flour, no other binders, no onions, no nothing.”
This is because potatoes can be lean on their own. either sweet. Think about it. Who among us has not dipped french fries in milkshake? Returning the latke to its simplest form opens up the other half of the flavor spectrum.
“Potatoes work very well, crossed with some sweetness,” says Umansky. “So developing a latke that was just potatoes was important, because not all of those [traditional] Content translation.
In other words, it’s hard to mix black pepper with chocolate ice cream.
Umansky doubles down on his sweet latkes by pointing out how many latkes have evolved throughout Jewish history. Sicilian Jews had Hanukkah fried pancakes made from fermented batter, semolina, honey, and ricotta. The Spanish Inquisition (the Spaniards ruled Sicily at the time) brought Jews to Eastern Europe where potatoes were far more prevalent. And sawHang we know, love was born today.
A modern hash latke of potatoes, onions, maybe a little garlic, egg, and flour is ideal. Umansky accepts this. But nothing says we have to stick to that rulebook. We can make Lattu just the way we want to eat them.
At The Larder in Cleveland, that means turning the latke into a bowl of fried potatoes with a scoop of chocolate ice cream inside, drizzling chocolate sauce over the top, and pouring walnuts and dried cranberries around it.
The only question is, what will be your latke this Hanukkah?
How to make Potato Latkes only
You might be wondering how cut potatoes stick together without a binder. Remember, potatoes are full of starch—a binder in itself.
Umansky says he uses a par-cooking technique to gelatinize the starch inside his potatoes. Par-cooking is a technique in which you partially cook something with the intention of finishing it later. It’s popular for meal prep and allows you to heat something up quickly before serving. Umansky preheats his oven to 350°F, places the potatoes on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and lets them bake for 30 minutes. Only after they’ve cooled will he start running them against a box grater or putting them in a food processor.
This technique, Umansky explains, makes the potato pulp incredibly sticky, thus pulling away without using flour, eggs, or any other binder. He specifically uses Carola potatoes for his potato-only lattes, as they are an extremely buttery-tasting potato with a creamy, waxy flesh. Plus, he can get them locally in the Cleveland area at the Shaker Square North Union Farmers Market. But a Carola substitute isn’t a deal breaker. Umansky stresses that you can use any potato you like.
In the larder, they like to fry their latkes in chicken or duck schmaltz, but Umansky says home cooks can use olive oil or really any oil they like. The ratio he uses is one pint schmaltz or oil to two large Carola potatoes.
Any experienced latke line worker knows that you shape the potato mixture into a fist-sized pancake on the pan, maybe even smoothing it a bit with the back of a spatula. But as a deli owner, Umansky is making a lot of latkes this time of year. Efficiency and ease are key. So he cuts his latke into squares. It’s easier for him in restaurants.
Fried potatoes are fried potatoes at the end of the day. They won’t taste different whether they’re in a rough circular shape, a square, or a carefully crafted rhombus. Do whatever works for you and make frying your latkes a fast, smooth and satisfying experience.