Latkes have long been a staple for jewish diets around the globe, but they’ve become a part of many other cuisines at this point. Unlike potato pancakes that are made with leftover mashed potatoes, these latkes are made with shredded fresh potatoes held together with matzo meal and some egg.
You can serve these in a traditional manner with applesauce or sour cream. Or serve them your favorite dipping sauce or even some cheese. No matter how you choose to serve these, they are an ideal side to any meal.
To make this recipe super easy I used the shredder attachment on my food processor. If you don’t have this you’ll need to use a box shredder. This latter method can be labor intensive, but it’s worth it to use fresh potatoes.
Some matzo meal makes these potato cakes stick together really well and adds a bit of salty flavor. As an option you can add some shallot and some onion powder to the potatoes for a more savory experience. There are some who don’t consider onion flavors to be traditional so it’s up to you. I don’t find that the onion flavor makes the applesauce taste any different- in fact I kind of enjoy the contrast.
The largest investment of time in this recipe is making sure each latke is fried to perfection in the hot oil. But, wow is it a wonderful pay-off!
The crisp outside and tender insides of each latke make each bite a satisfying experience.
Once you make your own latkes from scratch you’ll understand why they are such an iconic food- a must taste side dish for sure!
Latkes with Applesauce
Makes 16-18 latkes
20m prep time
30m cook time
- 2 Russet potatoes, peeled, shredded, and drained
- 1/4 cup chopped onion or shallot
- 2 tablespoons matzo meal, or more as needed
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil, or more as needed
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder (optional)
- applesauce and sour cream for serving
- Mix together potatoes, onion, matzo, eggs, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. If mixture is too wet add more matzo meal.
- Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Use a scant 1/4 cup to measure each latke. Drop this into hot oil and flatten lightly with spatula. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown.
- Place on paper towel-lined plate to drain. Sprinkle with more salt if desired and serve with sour cream or applesauce.
Recipe adapted from Tori Avey.