Latkes are a traditional Eastern European Jewish dish typically served during the Hanukkah season. It's a fried potato pancake but often accompanied by additional ingredients.
Latkes are believed to have originated in East European Jewish communities in the 1700s. The term "latke" is derived from Yiddish, and the original preparation of the dish was simply pieces of grated potatoes fried in oil.
Latkes can be prepared as a savory dish or a dessert, depending on the ingredients. In the savory versions, potatoes are usually mixed with other vegetables and fried in oil.
The most popular accompanying condiment for Latkes is applesauce or sour cream. Other options include onion, horseradish, and various herbs and spices.
The traditional Hanukkah Latke is usually prepared from grated potatoes and onions and fried in beef fat or oil.
Potato pancakes can also be prepared with buckwheat or matzah meal for a gluten-free option. Many chefs prefer to use the combination of potato and buckwheat flour for a more exciting flavor.
While Latkes are traditionally served on Hanukkah, they have become popular in many countries. In the United States, they can be found as appetizers in restaurants and used as a topping on various dishes.
Some modern varieties of Latkes use other types of vegetables, such as carrots, zucchini, and squash, to add a unique flavor.
Latkes can be cooked in a skillet with oil or the oven with a sheet pan. They can be served hot or cold and enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
The traditional potato pancake is pan-fried and served hot with a variety of savory toppings. It can also be served as a side dish to other savory dishes like roast chicken or beef.
Latkes can also be baked rather than fried and come in sweet and savory versions. In sweet versions, mashed potatoes are mixed with sugar and egg and baked in the oven. Savory versions can contain onions, garlic, herbs, and other seasonings.
These ten facts about Latkes provide an interesting overview of the traditional Eastern European Jewish food. This type of pancake can be adapted and enjoyed in many different ways.