From the I’M NOT MARTHA email, come these great hints for super latkes. Martha apparently knows nothing about kashruth, but, still, her observations are good.
FOUR KEYS TO SUCCESSFUL PANCAKES:
1. Once you peel and grate the potatoes, work as quickly as possible to prevent discoloration ? after a few minutes, they’ll start to oxidize and turn brown.
2. Squeeze all the liquid you can from the potatoes and onions ? lingering water will keep the pancakes from holding together and cooking properly.
3. You can cook latkes in either oil or butter, but a mixture of the two will combine the flavor of butter with oil’s high smoking point (which helps protect against scorching or burning). We like a one-to-one ratio.
4. Potato pancakes are best served as soon as possible, before they lose their crunch. Of course, if you’re frying them in batches (as in these recipes), you’ll need to keep the first batches warm in the oven while you cook the rest.
As long as you work somewhat quickly, they’ll retain most of their texture and flavor. Using two pans can lessen the holding time, but be sure you’re comfortable with the frying process ? you’ll need to watch both pans closely to prevent burning. Or, if your kitchen is close to your guests, offer the latkes as they come out of the pan, after a brief drain on paper towels.
A wonderful Chag Ha-Orim to you and yours. May your dreidyl always land on Gimmel!