latke redux

When I brought you rugelach pinwheels last week, I told the story of watching women make this on the Martha Stewart Show and grumbling to myself about why they felt the need to change a cookie that was just perfect from the outset. Why fix what wasn’t broken?

Of course, in the end, the recipe yields the most delicious rugelach in the whole world–even if not better than the original, well-deserving of a heroic place aside them in your repertoire. But, I still stick to my original schtick, which is that if you have a recipe that works splendidly each time, there is no reason to change it.

Why repeat this today? Because I did it–yes, again. Along with a few more recipes from last Saturday’s Hanukah luncheon I hope to work my way through this week, I of course made a batch of latkes. Yet for some harebrained reason I chose to use a new recipe, and not one of the two I made last year that were flawless in every way. They ended up undercooked, then overcooked in the when I decided to finish them in the oven and though not a single person complained, I seriously need to work on practicing what I preach.

Maybe next year I’ll learn.

Happy Hanukah to those who celebrate it! May you eat many delicious latkes, even if you do not.

first night

Latke recipes on

Latke recipes elsewhere:

One Year Ago: Winter Panzanella

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26 comments on latke redux

  1. I love good latkes, and I’m sad to say I’ve never made them. The only latkes I’ve had recently are the frozen ones at Trader Joe’s.

    I’ll have to try one of your recipes this season. Thanks Deb!

  2. Happy Hanukkah to you too! I did not make latkes tonight. Had them the other night and couldn’t take the smell of the fried foods again! But we did light the Menorah like you! I also picked my son up at the JCC and saw them lighting the big electric Menorah with all the kids huddled around. Very nice sight!

  3. Happy Hanukkah, Deb. We had friends over for dinner/lighting the candles tonight. Being new to the holiday (via my husband), I still have a fear of making latkes and didn’t do so tonight (not a weeknight endeavor, in my book). I will be making them this weekend, though, and I’d love to know if you have any tips for making them ahead of time. I tried it last year (fried earlier in the day, stored on parchment-lined baking sheets and baked to “re-crisp” later in the day) and they were definitely soggy.

  4. Happy Hanukah, baby! All best to you and yours.

    Hey listen, you don’t happen to have a killer coffee cake recipe, do you? This may be heresy, but Williams-Sonoma used to sell a coffee cake mix, maybe 5 years ago, that was knock-your-socks-off good. Just plain coffee cake with streudel, none of this cranberry cappuccino bullshit. They’ve stopped selling it, and girl, I am like a crack ho whose supply has dried up. It is very, very sad.

    Any words of wisdom for me?

  5. Gladys Kabanek

    Happy Hanukkah Deb to you and family. Still read your site every day and miss it when you don’t post. Love to you and yours

  6. Rachelle

    Happy Hanukkah, Deb!

    I recently discovered your site, and I must say, I am completely addicted! Love your writing and your beautiful photography (the recipes are good, too!).

    I love latkes and am anxious to try this recipe. Can you tell me what they are served with in the photo? I usually use sour cream, but that looks too thick to be sour cream. Whatever it is, it looks delish!

  7. deb

    Hi Rachelle — I usually use either sour cream or apple sauce, but we had some creme fraiche (soo fatty, soo unbearably delicious) left in the fridge from a prior recipe, so we used that instead. If you’re looking to gild the lily, or for something richer than cream for your pasta or soup, or more lush than butter on your toast, you will definitely want to try some.

  8. Grace

    I throw a Chanukah party every year, where the Jews are outnumbered but everyone loves the latkes. My tips for latke making: an electric skillet (keeps heat even, requires less oil, makes a good-sized batch at once), peanut oil (higher heat threshhold, you’ll still need a roll of paper towels nearby), and Mollie Katzen’s latke recipe – key step is that you parboil the shredded Yukon or russet potatoes before mixing them up with onion, eggs, flour, salt and pepper — yields a delicious, crispy and creamy latke.,M1

  9. Maggie

    Deb, T h a n k y o u for posting a link to The Wednesday Chef! Because of it, I now know where my broiler is in my oven! The Wednesday Chef referred to discovering hers in her post along with discovering the use of various food processor blades and I thought to myself, ‘I wonder if her oven is like mine, since I can’t get my broiler to work…’ Little did I know that I had been assuming my broiler location was in the main oven (where it always was in my mom’s oven growing up and always should be, for that matter) when really it was in the lower compartment I had been using for storage! My only complaint now is that I don’t think I can fit a large dutch oven pot of boeuf bourguignon underneath the broiler : (