Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Celebrate Hanukkah with Latkes

Photo by Ray Kugler, Associated Press
I didn't want today to rush by without wishing you a Happy Hanukkah. While the Festival of Lights is considered a minor holiday for the Jewish people, it has such a beauty of spirit - the rededication and the menorah's light in the darkness has always moved me.
My memories of childhood Hanukkah's spent at my friend's table are everlasting. Much has been written of the Jewish-Maccabean victory over the Syrian-Greeks in 165 B.C. But Hanukkah is not about a the military victory per se but about the rededication of the Temple and the miracle of the oil. Read more about it here.

Photo by Larry Crowe, Associated Press
Because of the significance of the miraculous oil, the Hanukkah table is graced with foods fried in oil. Hanukkah favorites are the latkes. Below is a listing of latkes for all tastes: the traditional, the sweet, the fruit, the oven-baked, the gluten-free.
Apple Latkes - Smitten Kitchen has a sweetly-spiced version of latkes complete with a decadent caramel sauce

Baked Latkes - traditional but baked in the oven to a crsipy texture

Carrot latkes - an original featuring carrots and tomato sauce

Gluten-Free Latkes - A low-fat latkes recipe that replaces flour with potato flakes

Orange and Vanilla Sweet Cheese Latkes - part breakfast food and part dessert

Potato Latkes - the traditional, classic recipe

Ratatouille Latkes - the classic French recipe using eggplant, squash and peppers rolled into a latke

Sweet Potato, Oven-baked Latkes - uses sweet potatoes and baked in the oven for a more healthy latke

Vegetable Latkes -made with potatoes and colorful vegetables such as carrots and zucchini

Zucchini-Parmesan Latkes - Latkes go a wee bit Italian in this recipe

I usually opt for the traditional - I have a traditional gene that affects my choices. Not surprisingly, tonight I will be making the Zucchini-Parmesan latkes. Happy Hanukkah!


Whats Cookin Italian Style Cuisine said...

wow pretty impressive, its such a coincidence today I posted on my facebook what these candles were for since the supermarket has them on sale everywhere. So I had no idea, and here I come to you site and got educated immediately. Until today, I never realized how much other cultures do, that I have no clue about. The latkes youve posted is another one of those things I never heard of or had. So bonus! I would really like the zucchini parm ones! Very nice post!My sisterinlaw is jewish, but never practiced it I guess, she has never talked about this. The closest I ever got to jewish foods were noodle kugel lol thanks for the pictures and schooling today

Anne said...

I never realized that ther were so many ways to make latkes. Last year, I found a recipe that used parsnips and carrots. My husband said he liked them. This year, I asked him if he wanted me to make them again or potato laktes. His response,"Potato Laktes!" I quess he just might prefer the traditional way.
Happy Hanukkah.

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

Happy Hanukkah.

I can never seem to get enough Latkes. Eating them is reason enough to celebrate. The orange and vanilla one is new to me. Sounds delish.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

I watched a Martha Stewart rerun on the Hallmark channel today and she showed the cookbook author of the "2nd Ave Deli" Cookbook, Sharon Lebewohl, making their famous potatoe latkes, pink applesauce and chopped liver. My mouth was salivating the whole time!
Although I'm not Jewish I grew up eating latkes and chopped liver -- it must also be a Brooklyn thing! :)
I'm going to try making them out of sweet potatoes this year...yum!

Claudia said...

I used to get my latkes from the back of a truck in Queens. It was a Brooklyn guy acctually and he was quite famous for selling them on the street - the health code was not up to par but the latkes were delicious!

Fresh Local and Best said...

Happy hanukkah! I like the sound of the baked sweet potato latke. It sounds like a nice twist.

Arlene Delloro said...

Great post. I adore latkes (especially with a Mimosa). Don't even want to guess how many Weight Watcher points they'd cost, lol.

Wanda..... said...

I have already added the Zucchini-Parmesan Latkes to my recipe file...Thanks Claudia!

Anonymous said...

zucchini parmesan latkes sound good! we went with the traditional ones tonight, 5 Star foodie Junior will post tomorrow :)

UrMomCooks said...

Well you got me with the sweet potato latkes! Although zucchini and parm sounds pretty awesome too! Happy Hanukkah!

Biren @ Roti n Rice said...

Zucchini parmesan latkes sound good but I also like thesweet potato and gluten free ones. Thanks for all the links.


Wow, wow, wow! They all sound so delicious--and unique! Carrot Latkes?!?

Anna's Table said...

I love potato latkes served with a dollop of sour cream,and as the French say,"tu me donnes le gôut" to make some.

Beth said...

What a wonderful selection of recipes! I do love latkes, and that sweet potato recipe sounds amazing.

Kim said...

Latkes are irresistible. Wouldn't you love to have a tasting menu of all those different latkes?

Happy Hanukkah!

FOODESSA said...

Thank you Claudia for sharing all this very moving and spiritual info with us.

The links to the latkes variety is a welcomed roundup ;o)

Flavourful wishes and Happy Hanukkah to our Jewish friends ;o)


Amy said...

I never knew there were so many ways to make latkes! I have never made them myself, but the ones I have had were delicious! Thanks for sharing all the links to the delicious recipes!