Gluten-Free Latkes

latkes

What is a latke? Its basically a hashbrown cake. I don’t know the history of it, but its always been a favorite kosher food. There is more info here

Its based on a Ratner’s cookbook latke recipe which uses wheat flour. I’ have been using the recipe for at least a decade unaltered. However in the  last 2 years I quit gluten, so I needed a substitute. I always thought that the key to getting a gluten-free flour to work would be in the flour naturally. In reality gluten-free flours tend to need more water and eggs. Also the biggest thing that make a sticky batter to hold the grated potatoes together is a larger onion that is grated rather than pureed. They aren’t very healthy but do taste good and are pretty traditional. A much healthier version is the sweet potato one, however I”m not sure how to get sweet potato to crisp. Zucchini might work too as a replacement.

Equipment:

2 medium bowls or 1 large bowl. 2 makes it easier to knead the batter and more evenly distributed.

small bowl

food processor or hand grater (add an extra hour or more of prep time, somewhat better consistency)

frying pan (ceramic ones are fantastic very easy to clean and the latkes don’t stick)

chopping board

wire whisk or fork

flipper

Ingredients:

6 russet potatoes

Coconut Oil (make sure you have at least one full jar, you will use a lot of it), peanut oil or olive oil work as well, but less healthy. I use it to keep the frying pan almost evenly coated, 2 tsp per latke side roughly.

3 large eggs

1 large yellow onion (other types work but I like the flavor of the yellow onion)

¼ cup almond flour (can be replaced with coconut flour if worried about cooking almonds)

¼ cup potato flour

½ tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

½ cup of water

  1. Peel potatoes and than grate. If you use the traditional hand grater, grate into bowl of cold water. Divide evenly the grated potatoes in the two bowls filled with cold water. If processed still use the bowls of water. You might need to cut the potatoes to fit into the processor feeding tube. The goal of the cold water in the bowls is remove some of the starch and wetness of the potato, making it even crisper when fried.
  2. Do the same with onion, but grate it unto a chopping board or some clean surface that can be moved. Throw the peeled skin of the potatoes and onions into a garbage bag rather than down the sink. I have had the sink clog up on the peels and we needed a plumber to fix it.
  3. Break open 3 eggs into the small bowl and whisk with a fork or wire whisk until the yolks and whites are evenly blended.
  4. Add salt, pepper, onions and flour to the eggs. Whisk until evenly blended. This is the glue that binds the latkes essentially. You can add extra seasonings like garlic or cinnamon if you want more variety.
  5. Drain out the grated potatoes of water. Add the batter evenly to both bowls. This could be done with one bowl, but its harder to knead it than.
  6. Knead the potatoes with the batter until evenly mixed. If you have kids they would enjoy this part since its messy and hands on.
  7. Heat up a frying pan on high heat, add 2 teaspoons of coconut oil.
  8. From the mixes take about a tablespoon or 2 and place on the frying pan. I was able to fit about 4 of these. I then pressed down a bit to flatten the latke mix into the final latke shape. Some latkes are made thicker, but I tend to like make them thinner to make it crunchy.
  9. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes per side. You want it to be a dark brown color so its nice and crispy. Add more oil to keep a thin layer on the pan. This makes it easier to flip and the latkes tend to suck in a lot of oil.
  10. Place on a drying rack, or plate with a paper towel, to drain the oil out of the latke. Its ready to eat.
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