What’s cooking this Chanukah?

As regards food traditions associated with Chanukah, the internationally renowned Jewish food expert, Claudia Roden, explains in her iconic book, The Book of Jewish Food, that “The miracle of the oil is remembered in the kitchen with the abundant quantities used to deep-fry the traditional Hanukah treats. The Ashkenazim eat potato latkes (grated potato fritters). In Israel they make soufganioth or ponchkes (jam-filled doughnuts). The  Sephardim eat fritters in syrup variously called zalabia, loukoumades, sfenj and yoyos. Italians eat chicken pieces dipped in batter and deep-fried. Moroccans eat couscous with chicken that has been deep-fried rather than boiled.”

We are able to share a tried and tested recipe for potato latkes that you can make for your family to enjoy this Chanukah. This particular recipe, published in the 1951 Union of Jewish Women’s Union Cook Book, has been used by at least three generations of cooks. (See the cover of this much-loved recipe book.)



3 cups raw grated potatoes

2 eggs

1 small teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons flour

Pinch of pepper

1 teaspoon baking powder

Combine potato with the rest of the ingredients.
Drop by spoonfuls into a frying pan covered with hot fat or oil.
Fry till brown on both sides.

• Published in the December 2023/January 2024 issue – Click here to start reading.

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