Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Potato Latkes

An aside: A funny thing happened a few weeks ago. I somehow managed to run out of time and inspiration to blog. A week went by and I had nothing to post. After the week was up, I felt like I couldn't post just any recipe. It needed to be something good and yet, I still had no time or inspiration. By the time a week and a half had passed, the pressure felt off too. I had paused for so long that there was no longer any urgency. I was free to re-make recipes I had enjoyed and throw together my own concoctions that would never be good enough to post. It was a wonderful feeling, so you may note a reduction in blog posts going forward (or you may not, knowing me!). It doesn't mean I've forgotten how to cook or forgotten about this, just that perhaps I can enjoy what I've done before in addition to seeking out the new. After all, that was the purpose of starting this little project.

The main event: I was lulled out of my cooking rut by a friend. It was her birthday and she was having a potluck, so I decided to ask her what she wanted me to bring, expecting it to be the grapefruit yogurt cake. Instead, she surprised, no shocked me, by requesting potato latkes. I don't think I've ever had them before, but this recipe did give me a craving for some good Southern hashbrowns ... which are quite similar. Perhaps that's why I wanted to add bacon to these. It all makes sense now!

One year ago: Tomato and Olive Penne

Potato Latkes (faithfully followed from epicurious.com)

1 pound potatoes
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 3/4 cup olive oil

1. Peel potatoes and coarsely grate by hand, transferring to a large bowl of cold water as grated.
2. Soak potatoes 1 to 2 minutes after last batch is added to water, then drain well in a colander.
3. Spread grated potatoes and onion on a kitchen towel and roll up jelly-roll style. Twist towel tightly to wring out as much liquid as possible.
4. Transfer potato mixture to a bowl and stir in egg and salt.
5. Heat 1/4 cup oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Working in batches of 4 latkes, spoon 2 tablespoons potato mixture per latke into skillet, spreading into 3-inch rounds with a fork. Reduce heat to moderate and cook until undersides are browned, about 5 minutes. Turn latkes over and cook until undersides are browned, about 5 minutes more. Transfer to paper towels to drain and season with salt. Add more oil to skillet as needed.

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