Grate Expectations! Potato Latkes

Potato Latkes
Courtesy Sputnikcccp/Wikipedia

Hanukkah is a time when all good people grease their arteries with potato pancakes or latkes.  Friends will remember the haze of grease that would descend in my San Francisco apartment every year around this time, for the party I called Greasefest.  This would involve somewhere in the neighborhood of 25 lb (11.34 kilos) of skinned potatoes, a bunch of eggs and onions, some matzoh meal, and a vat of oil.  Oh and people you care about to foist all of this on.

Here now my recipe in smaller numbers:

  • 5 lb (2.27 kilos) of large peeled potatoes (the larger, the better)
  • 2 eggs
  • two medium-large onions, quartered
  • 1/2 cup matzoh meal
  • 2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/4 cup (or more) A descent high smoke temperature oil (grape seed oil is good)


  1. Preheat a large pan to the highest temperature you have.
  2. Grate potatoes and onions into a large bowl.  If you are making a larger amount, seriously consider using a food processor.  My aunt swears that it doesn’t taste as good, but I suspect that’s only if you use the blending blade instead of a grater attachment.
  3. Add eggs, matzoh meal, and salt.  Mix.
  4. Let sit for 10 minutes.
  5. Add grape seed oil, and allow to heat.  Important: do not add the mixture until the oil is VERY hot.
  6. Dollup small portions (about 2 tbsp) of the mixture into the pan.  Consider wearing long sleeves for this part as the oil will splatter. Flatten the mixture as best you can.
  7. Cook for approximately two minutes or til brown on one side.  Flip, and cook another two minutes.
  8. Remove latkes to a plate covered with paper towels to remove excess oil.

Serve with apple sauce and/or sour cream, coffee, orange juice, and Lipitor.