Tag: Onions

Marinara Sauce

Red Sauce

Marinara sauce is a quick and easy red sauce with few ingredients, minimal prep and short cooking time. It’s ready, start to finish, in an hour. Before you start, put up a large pot of salted water for pasta.

This recipe makes just about one quart, which is perfect for one pound of pasta. It’s dairy-free, gluten-free and vegan.

I use a little more oil to sauté the onions and garlic because a good olive oil is an essential component of a good red sauce.

Red Sauce

A medium onion minced is about one cup and 6 medium cloves garlic add a good punch of garlic without being overwhelming. I also like a little crushed pepper flakes for heat. Fresh basil adds a complementary flavor to the tomatoes. If you don’t have any, use a teaspoon of dried basil. One 28-ounce can crushed or puréed tomatoes completes the recipe.

Sweat the onions on medium heat for five minutes to soften and release the natural water content. Stir in the garlic, pepper flakes and dried basil, if using, and cook for 30 seconds. Just long enough to release the aromatic aroma of the garlic. Stir in the tomatoes and fresh basil, if using, bring to a boil, lower the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for 30 minutes.

Red Sauce

The best way to dress the pasta is to put a couple of ladlefuls of sauce in the drained pasta pan and add the pasta back. Stir to combine. Serve the extra sauce and some grated Parmesan cheese on the side.

See our recipe for garlic bread, a great accompaniment for a pasta with red sauce!

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Marinara Sauce

Red Sauce

Marinara sauce is a quick and easy red sauce with few ingredients, minimal prep and short cooking time. It’s ready, start to finish, in an hour. Before you start, put up a large pot of salted water for pasta.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 1 quart
  • Category: Sauce

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, minced

8 cloves garlic minced

¼ teaspoon pepper flakes

1 can (28 ounces) puréed tomatoes, such as San Marzano or Red Pack

2 large sprigs fresh basil or 1 tablespoon dried basil

Instructions

Heat the oil in a medium, covered saucepan over high heat.

Stir in the onion and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. If the onion starts to brown, lower the heat.

Toss in the garlic and pepper flakes; cook and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Stir in the tomatoes and basil, bring to a boil, cover and lower heat to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes.

Discard basil.

Notes

Recipe easily doubles and freezes well.

Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

A wilted salad is typically an unappealing one, with old, brown leaves. An intentionally wilted spinach salad, however, gently “cooks” the leaves with a warm vinaigrette and is delightful to the eye and palette.

I prefer baby spinach in general, because it requires less work. The stems are delicate, edible and usually less sandy than their mature counterpart. Mature spinach needs a thorough wash and rinse and the tough stems have to be removed. A tedious job.

Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

The best way to cook bacon is in a cold pan to prevent sticking and browns evenly. Place the bacon in the pan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.

The bacon, scallions and vinegar release aromas that are smoky, savory and tangy all at once. For added texture, don’t hesitate to add toasted or seasoned nuts for an added crunch.

Watch the Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette Video Here

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Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

A wilted spinach salad gently “cooks” the leaves with a warm vinaigrette and is delightful to the eye and palette.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 portions
  • Category: Salads

Ingredients

Bacon Vinaigrette

2 slices bacon, diced
4 sliced scallions, green tops included
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
a pinch of coarse salt
a few cranks on the pepper mill

Spinach Salad

6 cups baby spinach
2 cups, about 6 ounces, button mushrooms, washed, woody stems removed and thinly sliced
½ cup thinly sliced red onions, rinsed and dried
16 cherry tomatoes, halved
¼ cup blue cheese crumbles

Instructions

Bacon Vinaigrette

Place the bacon in a cold pan over medium-high heat and cook until crisp, stirring occasionally.

Stir in the scallion and cook until wilted, about 2 minutes.

Add the olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper and whisk.

Spinach Salad

Place the spinach, mushrooms, onions and tomatoes in a salad bowl.

Whisk the hot dressing one more time and pour over the salad.

Toss and top with the blue cheese.

Notes

Use as much olive to the bacon fat to make 1/4 cup.

The best way to cook bacon is in a cold pan to prevent sticking and browns evenly. Place the bacon in the pan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.

 

Skirt Steak Fajitas

Tex Mex

Fajitas are a Tex Mex dish traditionally using skirt steak. Today there are endless variations using chicken, pork, lamb, shrimp, fish and, of course, vegetables.

Topping options include shredded lettuce, cilantro leaves, shredded cheese, sour cream, sliced olives, pico de galo and/or guacamole. Heat is easily controlled by putting hot sauces on the table and letting each dinner tap a drop or two on or just shake the bottle all over everything! Our tolerance for heat is mixed in our family.

Tex Mex

I grilled a red onion and those absolutely adorable and deliciously sweet baby bell peppers, as well as the steak, which adds a lovely smokiness to the fajitas and uses less oil. Don’t overcook, keep some texture to the vegetables, just a little crunch.

Tex Mex

I recently read that if you leave the skins on the red onion while grilling, the onion won’t fall apart, which didn’t work for me. Slide a wood skewer through the side of each thick slice to hold it together that works pretty well.

Tex Mex

Toast the tortillas on the grill, while the meats rests. Lay out all the ingredients and let everyone craft their our own.

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For a gluten-free version or to go carb free, put salad greens on the plate and arrange the other ingredients across the top. The pico de gala or guacamole are perfect substitutes for a salad dressing.

Skirt Steak Fajita Recipe

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Skirt Steak Fajitas

Tex Mex

For a gluten-free version or to go carb free, put salad greens on the plate and arrange the other ingredients across the top. The pico de gala and guacamole are perfect substitutes for a salad dressing.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 portions
  • Category: Beef/Main Dish
  • Method: Grill

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 large cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 ½ pounds skirt steak
  • 16 baby bell peppers
  • 1 red onion cut into thick slices
  • olive oil
  • coarse salt

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the oil, lime juice, garlic, salt, coriander, cumin, oregano and pepper flakes.
  2. Pour the marinade over the steaks in a non-reactive bowl and toss to coat well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours.
  3. Preheat the grill.
  4. Drizzle the peppers and onions with a little oil and a sprinkling of salt.
  5. Cook the peppers and onion slices on the grill first until al dente and slightly charred. Slice the bell peppers and separate the onion into rings.
  6. Remove the steaks from the marinade and dab to remove excess liquid, which can cause flare ups.
  7. Place the steaks on the grill and cook a minute or two per side, turning to char nicely until done. Don’t overcook, or the meat toughens.
  8. Let the meat rest for a few minutes.
  9. Toss the tortillas on the grill for 30 seconds flip and cook for 30 seconds more. Wrap in a towel to keep in the moisture.
  10. Thinly slice the meat against the grain and serve with the peppers and onions and any other condiments you like, such as pico de gallo, guacamole, sour cream, shredded lettuce, sliced olives and/or shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese.

Potato Packets

potato packets

Growing up I spent many weekends at my girlfriend Nancy’s family cottage on Honeoye Lake in upstate NY. We frequently grilled on the weekend and Mrs. D (Nancy’s mom) made these delicious individual potato packets to be grilled along with the chicken or steak.

I never forgot about them and started making them for my kids; they loved them. Over the years, I’ve adapted the recipe to include onions and other vegetables and I make them in larger packets.

potato packets

I particularly like red potatoes. Wash and cut into thin slices with the skin on. Thinly slice onion and bell peppers. Cut zucchini in slightly larger chunks; it cooks quickly. Season generously with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Toss and wrap tightly in heavy-duty aluminum foil.

potato packets

Be careful not to puncture the foil, the steam aids in the cooking and the high heat creates a little caramelization.

potato packets

Turn every few minutes for even cooking. Takes about 15 minutes for large packet. Open immediately otherwise the vegetables get soggy and place in a serving bowl.

This is a great summer recipe. Make ahead and keep in the refrigerator. Grill the entire dinner and no pots and pans!

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Potato Packets

Zucchini chunks work well as do thinly sliced bell peppers, but don’t hesitate to add something you enjoy more. The flavors meld together and the potatoes are a wonderful side dish for any grilled meat, fish or poultry!

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 45 mins
  • Yield: 8 portions
  • Category: Vegan/Vegetarian
  • Method: Grilling

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, divided
  • 4 medium red potatoes, thinly sliced (about ¼-inch)
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced (about ½-inch)
  • 1 medium zucchini, trimmed, cut into quarters lengthwise and into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
  • 1 teaspoon dried bouquet garni, divided

Instructions

  1. Preheat grill to high.
  2. Place two long sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil on the counter. Pour 1 ½ teaspoons oil in the center of each sheet.
  3. Place the potatoes, onion, pepper and zucchini on top of the oil.
  4. Sprinkle the vegetables with one half each salt, pepper and bouquet garni.
  5. Use the ends of the foil to help you “toss” the vegetables, by sliding back and forth, to coat the ingredients.
  6. Bring the long ends of the foil together, making flattish packets for even cooking, and fold the ends over a couple of times for a tight seal, just as if you were wrapping a sandwich.
  7. Turn and tightly crimp the ends.
  8. Use another sheet to double wrap. Place the sealed side down first, this offers a little protection if you happen to rip the outer layer with your tongs, and repeat the wrapping process.
  9. Place the packets on the preheated grill and cook for about 15 minutes, turning every 3 minutes to prevent burning. Use a fork to gently puncture the packet to see if the potatoes are soft.
  10. NOTE: The potatoes primarily steam, but some caramelization will occur if your grill is hot enough.
  11. Remove packets and open carefully, lots of steam is released. Slide the potatoes into a warm serving bowl and scrape any pieces that stick to the bottom of the packet, they’re tasty!

Notes

Prepare the packets in advance, just refrigerate until ready to grill. Cook an extra 3-4 minutes to compensate for the cold temperature.

 

 

 

One-Pot Chicken Dinner

This may be the best chicken I ever made! I used a peculiar method of mixing two totally incompatible cooking techniques: roasting and braising. Crazy right? But it worked. And, it’s a One-Pot Chicken Dinner!

Nothing is more satisfying than making a meal in one pot. A One-Pot Chicken Dinner is even better! Cooking the chicken on the bone with the skin on creates a very moist chicken. And using a herb butter mix and both under and over the skin of the chicken delivers outstanding flavor.

I’ve recently come across a few recipes for roasting a chicken in a heavy-duty pot such as a LeCreuset Dutch oven, which is an iron pan with an enamel coating. An excellent braising vehicle. The idea of using it to roast seemed a bit odd at first. Usually you want a roasting pan that has lower sides to allow the heat to reach the chicken and brown the skin. The problem with this method is that the breast is done before the thigh meat and continued cooking makes the breast meat dry.

It’s Really an Uncovered Braise

I thought I’d give this method a try and see what happens. My take is that it’s an “uncovered braise.” Leaving the cover off allows the top to get some color, but the cooking environment is still quite moist and the skin doesn’t crisp all over like a roasted chicken. However, the flavor and the moistness of the chicken is by far the best I’ve ever had! And, most importantly both the thigh meat and the breast are done at the same time. The intensity of the heat from the high sides of the pot accomplishes this beautifully and those high sides also keep moisture in the pot, preventing the chicken from drying out. A win win!

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I chose to use a lower cooking temperature than I saw in some recipes. I did start out at 475 degrees F for the first 20 minutes. The chicken gets a little color on the top and the pan heats up quickly. I then chose 300 degrees F for the cooking time vs. 350 degrees recommended in other recipes. This is more of the braise approach – low and slow.

Add vegetables to this for a one-pot dinner. Start with onions and garlic as the base, some thinly sliced red potatoes and anything else you like. I included some chopped chard, both stems and leaves. Don’t forget some fresh herbs, such as rosemary, thyme and/or parsley, salt, and pepper.DSCN5066

Rub a combination of melted butter, more of the herbs, garlic, lemon zest, salt and pepper under and over the skin and pop a quartered lemon into the cavity with a little salt and pepper.

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Cooking the chicken on top of the vegetables and letting all the flavors marry is a wonderful way to get dinner done in one pot. Check to make sure your potatoes are completely cooked. If not, finish on the stovetop while the chicken rests and then stir in the coarsely chopped chard leaves to wilt.

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Place the vegetables on a warm platter and top with the carved chicken.

The entire recipe can be prepared in advance, just take it out of the refrigerator an hour or so before roasting to let the pan warm up or add 5-7 minutes to the initial cooking time.

 

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One-Pot Chicken Dinner

Nothing is more satisfying than making an entire meal in one pot. A One-Pot Chicken Dinner is even better! Cooking the chicken on the bone with the skin on creates a very moist chicken. And using a herb butter mix and both under and over the skin of the chicken delivers great flavor.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 80 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 50 mins
  • Yield: 8 portions
  • Category: Chicken
  • Method: Roast/Braise

Ingredients

  • 2 bunches rainbow chard
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter or olive oil
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 3 large red potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon chopped thyme
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons chopped thyme
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 three to four pound roaster
  • coarse salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 lemon quartered
  • Garnish
  • More freshly chopped herbs

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F.
  2. Wash the chard and separate the leaves from the stems. Trim the stem bottoms and mince. Roughly chop the leaves and save for later.
  3. Grease the bottom of the pan with the butter or pour in the oil.
  4. Add the chard stems, onion, potatoes, garlic, rosemary, thyme, parsley, salt and pepper. Toss to combine.
  5. Combine the melted butter, rosemary, thyme, parsley, garlic, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Lift up the skin and using one-half of the butter mixture rub all over each breast and on the legs and thighs. Rub the remaining butter on the outside of the chicken.
  6. Sprinkle the inside of the chicken with a little salt and pepper and stuff in the lemon quarters.
  7. Tie the legs and place on top of the vegetables.
  8. Place the chicken in the preheated oven and roast for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 300 degrees F and cook for another 25-30 minutes per pound. The internal temperature of the chicken should register 170 degrees F.

Notes

The recipe can be prepared in advance, just take it out of the refrigerator an hour or so before roasting to let the pan warm up or add 5-7 minutes to the initial cooking time.

 

 

 

How to Slice Vegetables

sliced onions

Watch our latest video on How to Slice Vegetables. It may seem pretty straight forward, but we include a couple of tips for different shapes, including a  unique one for a crudité platter. Try our recipe for Scallion Parsley Humus!

See our Knife Skills Master Playlist here.

crudite platter celery

Cutting celery and carrots is exactly what you’d think. Slice across into the thickness you want. Carrots can be sliced as whole or half coins. Learn how to make an interesting shape for larger chunks of carrot in a stew that are just a wee bit fancy!

credit carrots

How to Slice Video

How to Dice

Many recipes call for dicing vegetables. Any slow cooke sauce or soup starts with  mirepoix, a combination of diced onions, celery, and carrots (ratio 2:1:1) as the foundation of the flavor base.Let us show you how to dice vegetables.

How to Dice an Onion

Common sizes are ¼-inch and ½-inch dice. Take the onion and slice a thin piece off the root end to get rid of the dirt and dried roots.

Removing a thin slice from the root end.

Cut the top off, stand the onion on the flat end and slice in half. Remove the skin and place the cut side flat on the cutting board. Place the heel of your chef’s knife against the top of the onion ¼- or ½-inch from the board and pull the knife back almost to the root end. Leave this small amount uncut to keep the onion intact. Repeat until you get to the top of the onion.

One-half-inch layers.

Turn the onion toward you with the root at the back. Make the same size slits across the onion without cutting through the root.

One-half-inch cuts across the top - keeping the root end intact.

Be sure to tuck your fingers under yourknuckles and keep your knuckles forward when slicing. The side of the knife runs into knuckles and your fingers are safely tucked away from the sharp blade.

Tuck your finger under and knuckles forward for safety.

Turn the onion back to it’s original position make same size slices.

Final cut down the onion in 1:2-inch slices.

Here’s a shot of a 1/4-inch dice (background) and 1/2-inch dice (front).

1:4-inch dice in background, 1:2-inch dice in front.

How to Dice Celery

Take a celery stalk and cut in half if very long for easier handling. Slice the stalk in half lengthwise and each half into 1/2-inch sticks or 1/4-inch sticks.

Cut the celery lengthwise in half and each half in half for a 1:4-inch dice.

Turn the stalks and slice into a 1/2-inch or 1/4-inch dice.

Dicing celery.

How to Dice Carrots

Carrots have an odd shape, very large at the top tapering to a narrow end. Depending on the length and diameter of the carrot cut in half or in thirds. Then cut each piece in half lengthwise. Place the flat side down and cut into 1/2-inch or 1/4-inch slices.

Slice the carrot in half then in half again and once more for a 1:4-inch dice.

Now cut each slice into 1/2-inch or 1/4-inch pieces. Lay these sticks side by side and cut across into a 1/2-inch or 1/4-inch dice.

One-quarter inch dice.

Watch the How to Dice video here.

 

Latkes (potato pancakes)

 

I’m the Shiksa in the family. Never heard of potato pancakes, let alone latkes before I met my husband. My mother-in-law, Ruth, would make them for our Passover Seder table and for Rosh Hashanah.

She made her latkes as we sat at the table, missing much of the early conversation, which I know was a great frustration for her. However, her latkes were VERY much in demand and our accolades I think made it worth her while toiling over the hot stove and oil. The latkes came out in small batches and were offered first to my father-in-law, Sam, at head of the table, then my husband and I who sat next to him on the right and then his sister across from us. Others had to wait until the next platter came out and so it went. So much work on such special occasions.

Ruth passed away very young (64) and the traditions passed on to my sister-in-law (Passover) and me (Rosh Hashanah). Unfortunately, her recipes passed with her. It took many years before I finally got the thumbs up from Sam on various holiday recipes and it all came from one source. In 1990, the New York Times did a review of a cookbook, SPIRIT and SPICE: The Complete Jewish Cookbook (Lubavitch Women’s Cookbook Publications, Brooklyn NY), which I bought. The challah, stuffed cabbage, latkes, and honey cake, were all winners; the book has many, many pages with hand-written four stars and “Sam loves this!” It was such a pleasure to finally satisfy his food memories. Latkes are pretty basic, potatoes, onion, flour, eggs, salt and pepper. But I wanted to give the book a shout out as it helped me bring back a favorite to our traditional Jewish table.

Unlike Ruth, I don’t want to be stuck in the kitchen cooking while everyone is at the table. I also don’t want the house to smell like oil on the holiday and have to clean up the mess after everyone leaves. I make my latkes a week or two in advance, freeze and reheat. It makes entertaining over the holiday so easy.

This year we’re doing a “latke bar” for Christmas Eve dinner (remember, Shiska here; we celebrate it all). I’m making bite-size latkes with sides of applesauce, sour cream, diced red onion, and small pieces of lox; everyone builds their own.

The keys to success in making latkes are setting up properly before you start cooking, shredding the potato to the right size (too long and the ends  burn, too short and they’re pasty), draining the potatoes, using a high smoke-point oil, such as peanut or canola, heating the oil to the right temperature (350ºF) and keeping it clean (removing stray potato pieces from the oil before starting another batch).

Temperature control is essential  for properly cooked fried foods of any kind. Cook in batches, overcrowding the pot decreases the temperature dramatically, and the temperature drops quickly when the food is placed in the pan and needs to be adjusted throughout the cooking process. If the oil is too hot, the outside browns quickly and the inside is undercooked. If the oil is not hot enough, the outside doesn’t brown properly, the inside is raw and the starch absorbs more oil resulting in greasy, flabby fried food.

My go-to tool for frying is an electric frypan. It has a temperature gauge, which allows you to set a specific temperature and maintains it evenly throughout the cooking process. No worrying about turning the flame up and down.

Clean up as you cook. While waiting to flip the latkes, take advantage of the minute or two to load the dishwasher or wash and dry a tool or two. By the time you finish the batches, most of the clean up is done.

Set Up Before Starting

Large colander
Cheesecloth
Vegetable peeler
Chef’s knife
Food processor or food grater
Large mixing bowl
Whisk
Frypan
One tablespoon measuring spoon for mini latkes (1 inch diameter) or a 1/4 cup measuring cup for small latkes (3-inch diameter)
Fine mesh ladle strainer
Small tongs for mini latkes or spatula for larger latkes
Two (10″ x 15″) baking sheets, one lined with paper towel and one with foil or parchment paper
Wax paper or parchment to separate layers

Line the colander with two opened layers of cheesecloth long enough for the ends to drape over the side by about four inches.; one going north and south, the other east and west.

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Fill the frypan with a thin layer of oil. My pan is 11-inches wide and about 1 1/2-inches deep. I used 1 1/2 cups peanut oil to start. Later I added another 1/2 cup. At the end I had about one-half cup oil left.

Place the trays next to each other on one side of the frypan for easy access, with the mesh strainer on the paper towel-lined tray. Place the bowl with the latke mixture on the other side of the frypan.

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Line up Your Ingredients

2 cups high smoke point oil, such as peanut or canola
2 large yolks (you’ll use one whole and the yolk only on the second)
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground fresh pepper
7 Russet or Idaho potatoes, peeled and cut lengthwise into quarters
1 large onion, peeled and cut into 8 pieces
1/4 cup all-purpose flour

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I didn’t have a large onion in the pantry and used three small to medium sized onions.

Method:

Cut the onion and one potato into chunks and put in a food processor and chop up small. Dump this into the lined strainer.  Quarter the remaining potatoes lengthwise and shred in the food processor or with a grater.

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Place the shredded vegetables in the colander.

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Pull  the sides of the cheesecloth  up and together.

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Twist tightly until the vegetables begin to weep.

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Keep squeezing until no more water leaks out. Then wrap the ball in a towel to remove the outside water.

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In the meantime, heat the oil in the electric frypan set to 350ºF or in a large frypan over medium-high heat to 350ºF.

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Whisk the eggs, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl.

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Add the drained shredded vegetables and mix well.

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Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and toss; It’s important to wait until this point to add the flour. Adding directly to the beaten eggs causes the flour to clump.po

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Use your measuring tool to scoop up the latke mixture and gently drop into the hot oil, flatten larger latkes with the back of the tool and repeat until the pan is fairly full. There should be spaces between each latke to fry them properly.

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I usually fry a single latke first to taste and make sure it’s properly seasoned before doing large batches.

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Flip with tongs for mini latkes.

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Cook until brown, just a minute or two for these minis, flip and cook another minute or two.

Set on the paper towel lined tray to drain and sprinkle immediately with a little salt.

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Clean the oil with the mesh-lined ladle to remove any stray pieces of potato to prevent them from burning, which breaks down the oil and gives it a bad flavor.  These little tidbits are a great little treat for the cook!

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Transfer the latkes to the foil lined tray after you flip the next batch. Once the tray is full, place a sheet of wax paper or parchment on top to start another layer.

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Repeat this procedure until the latke mixture is gone. As you get to the bottom, there’s more liquid; press the vegetables into the measuring tool to drain before dropping into the cooking oil. The excess liquid causes much spattering.

Lay another sheet of wax paper over the top.

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Tightly wrap the tray of fried latkes in foil. If using within three or four days, refrigerate, otherwise freeze.

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Reheat

Preheat the oven to 400ºF and cook in single layer batches until hot and crispy, about 12 minutes.

Latke Potato Pancake Recipe
Serves: 75 mini latkes
The keys to success in making latkes are setting up properly before you start cooking, shredding the potato to the right size (too long and the ends burn, too short and they’re pasty), draining the potatoes, using a high smoke-point oil, such as peanut or canola, heating the oil to the right temperature (350ºF) and keeping it clean (removing stray potato pieces from the oil before starting another batch). Temperature control is essential for properly cooked fried foods of any kind. Cook in batches, overcrowding the pot decreases the temperature dramatically, and the temperature drops quickly when the food is placed in the pan and needs to be adjusted throughout the cooking process. If the oil is too hot, the outside browns quickly and the inside is undercooked. If the oil is not hot enough, the outside doesn’t brown properly, the inside is raw and the starch absorbs more oil resulting in greasy, flabby fried food. My go-to tool for frying is an electric frypan. It has a temperature gauge, which allows you to set a specific temperature that it maintains pretty evenly throughout the cooking process. No worrying about turning the flame up and down. I use it for panfrying, such as the latkes or chicken cutlets and deep frying, such as French fries and fried chicken. Clean up as you cook. While waiting to flip the latkes, take advantage of the minute or two to load the dishwasher or wash and dry a tool or two. By the time you finish the batches, most of the clean up is done.
Ingredients
  • 2 cups high smoke point oil, such as peanut or canola
  • 2 large eggs (you’ll use one whole egg and only the second yolk)
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon finely ground fresh pepper
  • 6 Russet or Idaho potatoes, peeled and cut lengthwise into quarters
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into 8 pieces
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
Instructions
  1. Cut the onion and one potato into chunks and put in a food processor and chop up small. Dump this into the lined strainer.
  2. Quarter the remaining potatoes lengthwise and shred in the food processor or with with a grater.
  3. Place the shredded vegetables in the colander and pull the sides of the cheesecloth up and together; twist until the vegetables begin to weep. Keep squeezing until no more water leaks out. Then wrap the ball in a towel to remove the outside water.
  4. In the meantime, heat the oil in the electric frypan set to 350ºF or in a large frypan over medium-high heat to 350ºF.
  5. Beat the eggs, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl.
  6. Add the drained potatoes and onion and mix well.
  7. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and toss; It’s important to wait until this point to add the flour. Adding directly to the beaten eggs causes the flour to clump.
  8. Use your measuring tool to scoop up the latke mixture and gently drop into the hot oil, flatten larger latkes with the back of the tool and repeat until the pan is fairly full. There should be spaces between each latke to fry them properly.
  9. Cook until brown, just a minute or two for these minis, flip and cook another minute or two. Larger latkes will take three or four minutes. The latkes should be golden brown and crisp on the outside.
  10. Set on the paper towel lined tray to drain.
  11. Clean the oil as needed with the mesh ladle to remove any stray pieces of potato to prevent them from burning, which breaks down the oil and gives it a bad flavor. These are great little treats for the cook!
  12. Transfer the cooling latkes to the foil lined tray after you flip the next batch.
  13. Once the tray is full, place a sheet of wax paper on top to start another layer.
  14. Repeat this procedure until the latke mixture is gone. As you get to the bottom, there’s more liquid; press the vegetables into the measuring tool to drain before dropping into the cooking oil. The excess liquid causes spattering.
  15. Place another sheet of wax paper on top and tightly wrap the tray of fried latkes in foil. If using within three or four days, refrigerate, otherwise freeze.
  16. To reheat:
  17. Preheat the oven to 350ºF and cook in single layer batches until hot and crispy, about 8 -12 minutes, depending on the size of your latkes.