Every year, my husband Ben creates a new potato latke recipe for me to share for Hanukkah. We brainstorm the recipes together and then he brings them to fruition. His grandparents loved making latkes from scratch together, whereas my grandma’s were always made with box mix. While I actually do love a Manischewitz box latke, we enjoy doing things the hard way in this household. And using Ben’s grandparents’ recipe as a base felt like a lovely way to pay homage to them. This year, we decided on pickled beet and potato latkes with dill sour cream. Fried pickles are great, so why not take it a step further and add pickled beets to latke batter? They ended up being extremely tasty, with easy to source ingredients. Oh, and they’re really pretty, too!
What other types of latkes have you made?
Through the years we’ve done wacky combinations like chili pineapple and potato latkes served with passion fruit sour cream and persimmon potato latkes with black pepper sour cream. We’ve also done kimchi potato latkes and apple potato latkes with a smoky sour cream. They were all delicious. The potato is such a versatile vegetable and pairs beautifully with a wide range of flavors.
My latkes aren’t holding together. How can I fix this?
When making potato latkes, you want to avoid having too much moisture in your mix. Wringing the water out of your grated potatoes with a kitchen towel is an excellent way of decreasing the moisture level. You’ll also want to dry your pickled beets off before using them. I would recommend drying the outsides with a paper towel. I know it’s wasteful, but beets will absolutely stain, so unless you towels are black or you just don’t care, use paper.
If as the heading implies, you’re already past this step, worry not. Add more flour to the mixture. You’ll want to add 1 tbsp at a time until you feel that the consistency is better and less runny. It should still be a bit wet, but it shouldn’t be falling apart in the pan.
Can I make these gluten free?
Of course! Simply swap the flour for your favorite one to one gluten free flour. If you don’t have that, try using whatever gluten free flour you have on hand.
Pickled Beet and Potato Latkes with Salty Dill Sour Cream
- 4 cups russet potato
- 2 cups pickled beets
- 1 yellow onion
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 4 tbsp all-purpose flour
- approx. 16 oz frying oil – I like grapeseed but canola or sunflower work great too
Dill Sour Cream
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp dill
Pickled Beet Latkes
- Grate the potatoes into a large mixing bowl. I like to use the coarse side of a box grater but if you prefer your latkes less crispy and more cakey, then you'll want to grate finer.
- Grate or cut your pickled beets into little match sticks. The jar of pickled beets I bought came pre-sliced, so grating wasn't an option. Thus, I sliced the slices into little beet batons with a paring knife. But if you can find whole pickled beets and grate them, that'll go a lot faster. Add to the mixing bowl with the potatoes.
- Grate your onion on the finest side of the grater. Add your onion paste to the mixing bowl.
- Crack your eggs into the mixing bowl, then add
- Stir everything together until combined.
- Now, start stirring in one tbsp of flour at a time, with the goal of making your latke batter wet but not soupy. If you've got a puddle of liquid in there, add another tbsp of flour. You might need more or less than four. Don't worry about getting this step exactly right – it's very hard to screw up latkes. But if you're familiar with pancake batter – that's the consistency you're shooting for.
- Warm oil in a deep pan over medium heat. You're looking for about an inch of oil, or enough to cover each latke at least halfway. You can err on the side of less oil than you think you need to start – easier to add more while frying than it is to remove scalding hot oil.
- Once the oil is hot, add the latke batter about a 1/4 cup at a time. I usually fry two or three at once this way, but if you'd like bigger latkes you can go for 1/2 cup (or more)!
- Let them cook about 2-4 minutes on each side. This'll really come down to how hot your oil gets, and it'll probably get hotter and hotter the longer you fry. Your tell to flip a latke is when you see the outer edges starting to brown.
- Remove the latkes to a paper-towel lined plate.
Salty Dill Sour Cream
- Chop the dill.
- Add to a bowl with sour cream and salt.
- Whisk together until combined.
If you’re a pickled beet lover or a potato lover (though like… who isn’t?), I think you’ll be a big fan of these. Of course, if you do end up making them, I hope you love them! Let me know what you think in the comments or on Instagram. Hearing from you and seeing your beautiful creations always makes my day. Oh, and happy Hanukkah! I know it’s already day two, so you’ll have to forgive me. An excuse to eat more fried potatoes is never a bad thing, though.
Looking for more Hanukkah recipes? Try my buttery Hanukkah sugar cookies (with white and blue M&Ms for good measure) or my grandma’s steakhouse mushrooms with polenta for a main. The latter is a vegetarian version of my grandma’s filet mignon, which was always a holiday favorite for me.