Potato Pancakes (Latkes) – Papa Joe’s Recipe

LatkesOur eldest Mayhem has been helping Papa Joe to make Latkes – delicious potato pancakes, for the Jewish festival of Chanukah (Hanukkah). The festival celebrates a miracle when the lamps in the temple only had enough oil for 1 day but continued to burn for 8 days. So now it is traditional to eat foods such as doughnuts and latkes cooked in oil.

Papa Joe is not a very adventurous cook, but he enjoys making them with help from all our Mayhems. Papa Joe does the dangerous work (frying, cutting and some of the grating); and the Mayhems do the rest.

Use your own discretion as to how much (if any) grating the child can do; do not take any risks.

The recipe

1 egg
1 cup of plain flour
2 medium sized potatoes
Quarter of an onion
Pinch of salt
Vegetable oil to cover base of frying pan

Adult: Peel the potatoes
Grate the onion

Child: Grate the potatoes using a “box grater”; adult must supervise and take over as the potato becomes thinner
Child: Use a sieve to drain the potatoes  The dry-ish potatoes should be placed in a clean bowl.
OR (for more fun) Child: Squeeze handfuls of potatoes over a bowl (to capture the excess water).  The dry-ish potatoes should be placed in a clean bowl.

Child: Crack the egg into a small bowl, remove shell particles and check the egg looks OK. See our tips for successful egg cracking! 
Child: Mix  egg and salt into the bowl of grated potatoes

Child (with guidance): Add flour to the bowl of grated potatoes so that the mix is reasonably stiff.
Child: Use a large kitchen spoon or clean hands to form the grated potato into small flat rounds; each should be about the thickness of a typical hamburger patty

Adult: Heat the oil in the frying pan; fry at medium heat until golden and slightly crispy on both sides.  Take care to avoid burning them.

After they have finished cooking, put them on a plate covered with kitchen towel to drain excess oil.

Adult: Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Latkes can be served as an accompaniment to a main dish, but they are usually so delicious that everybody eats them as a snack, so there are rarely any left for later.


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