Our first Christmas together Doug bought me a Page-A-Day Yiddish calendar. It came with a word, a meaning, and the word used in a sentence. He laughingly turned to the page that read Shiksa; the non-Jewish girl who is dating your son. “Just because I am a shiksa doesn’t mean I don’t know a word or two of Yiddish!” I found that a lot of common words are actually Yiddish and enjoyed listening to Doug’s Bubbie (grandmother) use words interspersed in her sentences and have learned quite a few words in my time with his lovely family. Another thing I have enjoyed is learning the foods that they enjoy that we never had growing up. Matzo ball soup, eggs in salt water, egg soufflé, blintze casserole, and latkes just to name a few. My mother-in-law’s latkes are better than mine (as they should be), crisp and smaller. I make mine like you are trying to get through a long winter out on the prairie. Mine are quite delicious in their own right and are versatile enough to use up extra veggies or meats or fish to make an easy, filling meal. Even the kittens love them.
Grammie’s Get Through the Cold Winter Out on a Homestead Latkes
This feeds six people and one kitten as a side dish; about fifteen latkes
Shred 4 medium sized potatoes. My mother-in-law peels her potatoes but I leave the peel on mine. Lots of great nutrients and less clean up. Because of this my latkes have a slight grey cast on them but I couldn’t care less. They are still good.
Add 2 Tablespoons of minced dried onion, a teaspoon of salt and half a teaspoon of pepper (or any mix of herbs and spices you desire).
Let drain in a colander for twenty minutes.
Transfer to bowl and add 3/4 cup of organic flour. You could further make this healthier by instead adding 1/2 cup of whole wheat, or other whole grain flour.
Stir in 2 eggs.
Heat up a skillet with a good drizzle of oil and use your hands to pick up mounds and place in skillet, flattening them with a spatula. Cook for a few minutes and turn over. Cook both sides until nice and crisp.
Let drain on paper towels and place on cookie sheet. Before dinner is served just reheat latkes for about ten minutes at 350 degrees.
Most folks eat their latkes with sour cream or apple sauce. Both delicious, but his family taught me how to eat it with sugar. The kids around the table (all grown now) spoon on sugar generously as do the adults.
Wishing everyone a Happy Hanukkah and a very Merry Christmas. Both seasons of miracles, family, and peace.