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Sweet Potato-Apple Latkes

Updated November 28, 2017
This image courtesy of Squire Fox

Every year, we host a big Hanukkah party for a couple of dozen friends, serving up four or five different kinds of latkes (potato pancakes) at a time. These sweeter latkes, accented with the oniony bite of shallots, are always the first to go. And here’s a time-saving bonus: Because sweet potatoes contain less water than regular baking potatoes, you can grate them in the food processor without worrying about their releasing too much liquid.

Keep the oil at about 370°F while frying to prevent latkes from turning greasy. Check the heat with a candy thermometer (most quick-read thermometers don’t go high enough) and adjust accordingly.

Make-Ahead Tip: If making ahead, cool the latkes to room temperature, then freeze in zip-top bags. Re-crisp in a 325°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes before serving.

Apple Notes: I like a green, firm-tart apple here. Rhode Island Greening and Granny Smith would both make excellent choices.

Firm-Tart Apples:

Arkansas Black

Ashmead’s Kernel

Bramley’s Seedling

Calville Blanc d’Hiver

Esopus Spitzenburg

Goldrush

Granny Smith

Hidden Rose

Idared

Newtown Pippin

Northern Spy

Pink Pearl

Rhode Island Greening

Ribston Pippin

Rome

Roxbury Russet

Sierra Beauty

Stayman Winesap

Suncrisp

Serves25 to 30 latkes

Cooking Time1 min

Cooking Time - Text70

Cooking MethodFrying

CostInexpensive

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

Recipe CourseAppetizer, Side Dish

Dietary ConsiderationHalal, Kosher, Lactose-free, Peanut Free, Soy Free, Tree Nut Free, Vegetarian

MealDinner

Taste and TextureCrisp, Savory, Sweet

Type of DishVegetable

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds (900g) Garnet or Jewel sweet potatoes
  • 3 large firm-tart apples (about 1½ pounds total; see Notes), unpeeled, cored, and quartered lengthwise
  • 8 medium shallots (7 ounces or 200 g)
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup (130 g) matzo meal
  • 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil for frying (see Note)
  • Sour cream and Classic Applesauce, for garnish
  • Food processor or box grater
  • 10- to 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet
  • 3 large baking sheets

Instructions

  1. Using the coarse side of a box grater or a food processor fitted with a medium grating disk, grate the potatoes, apples and shallots. Toss together in a large bowl. Add the eggs, matzo meal, salt, and pepper and toss to mix well.

  2. Preheat the oven to 200°F. Pour ¾ inch of oil into a skillet over medium-high heat. When the temperature reaches 370°F, scoop ¼ cup potato mixture from the bowl, then gently drop that mixture out onto a wide spatula (the point here is to keep your hands as clean as possible). Press into a patty about 1/3 inch thick with your hand, then gently slide the pancake into hot oil. Cook three or four pancakes at a time (do not crowd the pan) until the edges are crispy and well browned and the undersides are golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Gently turn and cook until the other sides are golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes longer.

  3. Transfer the pancakes to paper towels to drain briefly, then arrange in a single layer on baking sheets and keep warm in the oven while you cook the remaining pancakes. Serve hot, with sour cream and applesauce.

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Question: The recipe says "Pour ¾ inch of oil into a skillet." I think this is a typo. Would it be ¾ of a cup of oil?

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