HALLIE EPHRON: This year Christmas and Hanukah collide, date-wise. Tonight we'll be lighting the first candle on the menorah and singing the first-night blessing. Here's our granddaughter with her first Hanukah candle two years ago. This year will be her third and her little brother's first.
Every year our special meal includes potato pancakes (aka latkes), brisket, and for dessert twice-baked cookies, like biscotti made with oil instead of butter and loaded with nuts, chocolate chips, and maraschino cherries.
Here are my recipes.
Here are my recipes.
The simplest ever potato pancakes (These are what I grew up with, nope, no onions)
2 large unpeeled potatoes (all-purpose russet or Yukon gold work best)
Cooking oil (vegetable or peanut oil; not olive oil)
Sour cream or apple sauce
Caution – once you start preparing, don’t stop until all the potatoes are cooked – grated potatoes left to stand will turn dark and yucky looking.
1. Grate 2 large potatoes (you can use a food processor but the results will be a bit crisper if you use a hand grater).
2. Dump the grated potatoes into a clean cloth dish towel. Over the sink, wring out as much liquid as you can from the potatoes.
3. Put the wrung-out potatoes into a mixing bowl and add the egg and a scant handful of flour.
5. Heat oil in a frying pan until a bit of potato sizzles when it hits the oil.
6. Ladel in tablespoons of potatoes into the hot oil. Don't crowd them. Flatten and cook until brown and crisp on one side, then turn and cook until brown and crisp on the other.
7. Drain cooked potato pancakes on paper towel, put on a wire rack in a cookie sheet, and keep in a warm oven.
8. Cook batches until all are cooked.
9. Serve with salt and your choice of apple sauce or sour cream.
3/4 c sugar
1 heaping T marmalade
1 c vegetable oil
3 1/2 c flour
3 oz chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 c raisins
1 c nuts (we use walnuts but "mandel" means almond)
1 small bottle of maraschino cherries, drained
Preheat oven to 350
Grease a cookie sheet (or two)
2. Add oil, sugar, jam, vanilla and mix together
3. Add raisins, nuts, chocolate chips, cherries and mix together
4. Add the soda and baking powder to the flour
5. Gradually mix the other already mixed (steps 1-3) ingredients into the flour
6. Shape the dough into three 3-4" wide logs on a greased cookie sheet
7 Bake at 350 for 25 minutes
8. Cool and cut diagonally with a sharp knife.
9. Put each piece, cut side up, sprinkle it with cinnamon-sugar, and bake for another 10 minutes
Cool. Save in a covered container.
These are wonderful briefly warmed in the oven, cinnamon side up, just before serving.
My husband's father would have eaten them with a glass of hot tea with a heaping spoonful of marmalade stirred in.