At Hanukkah time, it’s exciting to gather together family and friends to eat latkes. As the house fills with the inviting smells of frying potatoes and onions, the arriving guests feast first on the fabulous aromas. So good! There are a multitude of potato latke recipes in the world, but we set out to create colorful latkes that feature root vegetables and herbs. Although elegant enough for adults, these red, gold, and green latkes will catch children’s eyes, too. Kids will never guess they’re consuming vitamin-rich beets, rutabaga, and parsley.
We realize that the thought of putting rutabaga in potato latkes may be alarming, but trust us: It’s a great combination. If you like, replace the rutabaga with peeled and grated butternut squash or sweet potatoes, and the latkes will still be a lovely golden color. If your food processor has a grating blade, you can probably skim 15 minutes off the total time and be eating these latkes about 45 minutes after you get the urge to make them. Serve with Homemade Applesauce
Yields 12 latkes
Frying time: 30 minutes
Preparation time: 30 minutes (10 minutes per batch)
- 3 cups peeled and grated russet potatoes*
- ½ cup grated onions
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- ¼ cup unbleached white flour or matzo meal
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, or more to taste
- ½ cup peeled and grated rutabaga
- ½ cup peeled and grated beets
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- Line a colander with two layers of paper towels.
- Place the grated potatoes and onions in the lined colander.
- Gather together the ends of the paper towels and vigorously press out as much liquid as possible, until the grated potatoes are somewhat dry.
- This will help to create crisp latkes.
- Transfer the drained potatoes and onions to a large bowl and stir in the eggs, flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper.
- Divide the mixture equally among three smaller bowls (¼ cups per bowl).
- Mix the rutabaga into the first bowl, the beets into the second bowl, and the parsley and dill into the third.
- Preheat the oven to 200°.
- Warm the oil on high heat in a very large, heavy cast iron or nonstick skillet, until a drop of batter sizzles in the hot oil.
- Take one of the bowls of latke batter and drop the batter in fourths into the skillet: a scant ½ cup of batter per latke.
- Flatten the latkes with a spatula.
- Fry on both sides until brown and crisp, about 5 minutes per side.
- Drain well on paper towels.
- Transfer to a baking tray in a single layer and keep warm in the oven.
- Repeat with the other two bowls of latke batter to make twelve latkes in all.
- Offer each person a plate with three latkes: one of each kind; or artfully arrange the latkes on a platter either in rows by color or in a spiral of alternating colors.
- Serve with Homemade Applesauce and top with sour cream or yogurt.
Try thin slivers of lox (smoked salmon) atop the sour cream for a delicious addition.