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  • Happy Hannuka [updated again!]

    Posted by Jonathan on December 4th, 2007 (All posts by )

    Festival of Lights*

    Festival of Food

    *Yes, I know that the lamp on the right is not a proper Hannuka lamp. We were out of the proper candles, and the candles that we had fit only these two lamps.

    UPDATE: Potato pancake recipe. Grate potatoes. Squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Chop onions and mix with grated potatoes. Add egg, salt and pepper. Form into thin patties and fry in 1/4″ of oil (traditional method) or in nonstick pan using a trace of oil, making sure to smash pancakes onto frying pan to make them as thin as possible. Drain, cool and serve with yogurt/sour cream and/or apple sauce or other fruit sauces/preserves.

    UPDATE 2: I tried it again on the second night, this time using a mix:

    Better the first time?


    30 Responses to “Happy Hannuka [updated again!]”

    1. Dan from Madison Says:

      And Happy Hannuka to you as well Jonathan. I was not aware that hash browns were part of the celebration.

    2. josepdh hill Says:

      How mny wys can the name of this holiday be spelled?

    3. Jonathan Says:

      Dan: You call them hash browns, I call them potato pancakes. Cuisinart brings us together.

      Joe: Several, at least.

    4. Ginny Says:

      Happy Hanuka to you Jonathan, and may your holidays be happy.

    5. Jonathan Says:

      Thanks, Ginny. Best Christmas and holiday wishes to you too.

    6. Ralf Goergens Says:

      Happy Hanuka, Jonathan!

    7. Jonathan Says:


    8. Dan from Madison Says:

      “Cuisinart brings us together” – quote of the day!

    9. Shannon Love Says:

      Kid A: So, well be celebrating Haw-ne-ka?

      Kid B: No, it pronounced Hawgggkkkk-ne-ka, you have to ‘gggggkkkkk’ when you say it.”

      The Rugrats, from memory.

    10. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      And a Happy Hannuka to you as well!

    11. Jonathan Says:


    12. mjs Says:

      I was gonna say the lamp and potatoes are called “menorah” and “latkes,” respectively. Instead, I’ll just start singing…

      Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh —


    13. Lex Says:

      Ill need some sour cream with that.

      I hope you have two or more pans going. That’s not enough.

    14. Jonathan Says:

      -I ate it with yogurt and cranberry sauce. Apple sauce would have been better.

      -The photo represents one batch. I made about five batches. A flat pan would have worked better.

    15. Shannon Love Says:

      Strangely, enough our family has taken to eaten latkas for the holidays and our children consider it part of the family tradition. Funny, how good ideas spread.

    16. josepdh hill Says:

      Sour cream is dandy but some apple sauce too elevates the dish to new heights.

    17. Jay Manifold Says:

      Hmmm … scattered, smothered, and covered, perhaps? I’ve always wondered where Waffle House got some of its ideas … anyway, happy however-it’s-spelled, Jonathan!

    18. Jonathan Says:


    19. Lex Says:

      I was at a Waffle House in Port Arthur Texas earlier this year, late at night, after a very frustrating attempt to persuade a guy to testify for me in a case I was working on. The homey, blue collar ambience of the place, as well as the cheap and ample and yummy breakfast chow, helped take the bitter edge off the day.

    20. Jay Manifold Says:

      Well, now I’m going to hijack the thread and owe Jonathan an adult beverage (or maybe a WH special of his choice) at some future date … when I lived in Irving (TX; couple of miles W of Texas Stadium) in the ’90s I occasionally ate at the WH at TX-183 & O’Connor. Was in there one day with a very typical-looking WH crowd, who to be polite appeared to be of humble origins, modest attainment, and even more modest education. Some guy says something loud enough for several other people to hear about some modfication he’s making to his PC and everybody in the place jumps in and starts talking about patching DLLs and network protocols and God knows what — tons of highly technical, under-the-hood type details, the sort of conversation you’d expect to overhear at a convention of system administrators. It would have made a blue-stater’s head explode. Like going to a trailer park and finding it inhabited by cosmologists (Dilbert’s garbageman).

    21. Jeff Says:

      Happy Hannuka Jonathan!

      Dang, now I’m hungry again…

    22. Jonathan Says:

      Jeff: Thanks!

      Jay: Great story!

    23. Dan from Madison Says:

      Jonathan – do you eat those every night during Hanukah? The ones from the first night look greasier, thus better than the second ones.

    24. Jonathan Says:

      Dan, it’s custom rather than rule, so there’s variation by family and ethnicity. I grew up eating potato pancakes a couple of nights out of the eight. During the past few years I have been making them two or three times myself. That seems like enough. In some Jewish traditions they eat deep-fried pastries and maybe other foods instead of latkes. I might try making the pastries some day but they are a lot more work (yeast dough) as compared to potato pancakes.

      Yes, the greasier ones taste better, but they are greasier. Tradeoffs.

    25. Jonathan Says:

      BTW, the U. of Chicago has long had an annual “debate” on the merits of latkes vs. hamentashen (filled pastries, made from cookie dough and usually eaten during another holiday, Purim).

    26. Lex Says:

      Good recipe. No quantities given, which makes it easily scalable. Still the potato onion ration would be good to have in some general way. I think a relatively small proportion of onions would be best, and I speak as someone who usually goes deep into the onion territory.

    27. Jonathan Says:

      I used one medium onion and about 4 medium potatoes. It would have been better with more onions. I don’t think you can overdo onions with this recipe.

      Remember, however, that I’m the guy who wants a “Hooked on onions not drugs” bumper sticker for my car.

    28. Dan from Madison Says:

      I think I need to go to that debate someday. I would go with one HUGE onion and 4 potatoes rather than the medium onion.

    29. Miki Ellis Says:

      When I make them at home, I usually use about two pounds of potatoes and an onion about the size of a baseball. Since I’m cooking for fewer this year, it will be a pound of potatoes and half the onion.

    30. Jimbino Says:

      Y’all have a strange way of spelling the holiday.