While everyone is buying trees, putting up lights and going gaga on holiday spending, I’m making latkes. Yup. Hanukkah is totally the shafted holiday at this time of year. But I get it: Christmas is kinda awesome. The music, the cheer, the celebration. When I was little, my Grandma alwayssss took me to sit on Santa’s lap. “But Gram, will he even bring me presents? I’m Jewish!” She assured me that I’d get presents. One year, I insisted on decorating a wooden tree and called it our “Hanukkah tree.” Now I drive around jingle bell rocking to Mariah Carey all December. Oy, I’m the worst.
Maybe not the worst. I did make latkes. And that’s pretty darn festive if I do say so myself! What’s a latke you ask? Well, it’s basically a fried potato pancake. Latkes are a traditional Hanukkah food because we’re supposed to remember the teeny tiny bit of oil that miraculously burned for eight nights in the ancient temple by cooking things in lots of oil… because that makes sense.
I am sounding wayyyy too Grinchy for the holidays. The holidays are awesome. Hanukkah is awesome. Latkes are awesome. Hello carb fest! These guys are full of starchy, carbohydrate goodness – perfect for me in my marathon week carb loading. And you know my favorite carbs are sweet potatoes. Duh. You can totally make these with white potatoes (check out my other recipe here), but don’t the sweet potatoes look pretty? And they are a little bit more nutritious.
Latkes don’t require a menorah, dreidel or Jewish Grandma. They are a delicious addition to any meal – a Christmas feast, Kwanzaa celebration or marathon carb-loading. Eat latkes, drink eggnog and be merry. If Seth Cohen combined the holidays, we totally can too.
Sweet Potato Latkes
Adapted from my Potato Latke recipe
Ingredients (Makes approx. 20 small latkes)
- 2 medium sweet potatoes – peeled and shredded in a food processor or grater (approx. 3 cups)
- 1 small white onion – peeled and shredded in a food processor or grater (approx. 1/2 cup)
- 2 green onions – sliced (approx. 1/4 cup)
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup tapioca flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- coconut oil (or olive oil), for frying
1. In a medium bowl, combine the sweet potato, white onion and green onion. Mix until combined.
2. Add eggs, flour, baking powder, salt and pepper. Mix until combined.
3. Heat a large skillet coated in approx. 2 tbsp. of coconut oil over medium-high heat – you need to use enough oil in order to prevent the latkes from burning, make sure the entire bottom of the skillet is covered.
4. When the oil is melted and hot, drop heaping tablespoon measures of the latke mixture into the pan – be sure not to crowd the pan.
5. Cook for about 2 minutes per side – until golden brown.
6. Drain well on paper towels and continue the cooking process for the remainder of the mixture – adding more oil as necessary.
7. Enjoy – serve with unsweetened apple sauce, cranberry sauce or my cranberry orange sauce – click for the recipe.
Note: Freezes well. To reheat, place latkes on un-greased tin-foil lined baking sheet. Bake at 450F for 7-8 minutes.
Questions of the day…
Have you ever had a latke?
What are some of your holiday traditions?
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