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Donald's delicious latkes (eat 'em while they're hot!)
by Donald Pomeranz

     There are two schools of thought regarding the latke. There is the "you must bleed into the mix" and thus use the hand potato grater. Then there is "the latke is good without my blood" school of thought and that replaces the hand grater with the food processor. Having scraped enough knuckles over the years, I am now a proponent of the food processor!
     I take three potatoes to one onion. Here's the basic recipe:
     1-1/2 potatoes, good size, peeled and cut into chunks
     1/2 onion, good size, cut into chunks
     1 egg
     2 tablespoons of matzo meal or flour
     good pinch of salt and pepper (which I add after I've processed the mixture)
     Put all of this into a food processor. Now comes the tricky part. You have to know when to stop processing or the mix will become too runny. This takes experimentation and there's no recipe that will tell you when to stop. It can't be too lumpy and can't be too runny. Somewhere in between is correct. You want the mass to stay somewhat firm in the spoon as you slide it into the oil. How's that for precision!
     Fry in hot oil -- don't skimp on the oil, and put three or four latkes in at a time. Fry on one side to the dark brown stage, then flip and let fry until the second side is nice and brown. You don't want to keep turning them, and you want the latke to be crispy.
     This quantity of latke mix is perfect when you start off with about 1/4 inch of hot oil. Please note that the oil should be very hot. By the time I finished with that amount of latke mix, the oil was finished or beginning to burn. That's the time to start again. I find that it's key to keep the oil fresh and not let it get a burnt flavor from the little tidbits in the pan that burn.
     There you have it. Eat them while they're hot -- that's when they're the best. I also sprinkle on a little more salt when I take them out of the oil. No matter how I try to keep them warm for serving in bulk, they lose something when they cool down. This usually means everyone is standing around the kitchen eating the latkes while they're coming out of the frying pan.
     If you like thicker latkes, then you can add an additional egg and/or more matzo meal.
     For a little more flavor, you can add a couple of garlic cloves into the processor. Some people add some carrot to the mix. It's easy to experiment off of the main idea.
     Good luck and have fun. Remember....there is no such thing as a bad latke!

Donald's delicious latkes (eat 'em while they're hot!)
   Donald Pomeranz has been the star latke maker in our congregation for years. Here's his recipe for "the great latke." It's not quite exact in its measurements but try it!
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