Chanukah is known to be the holiday of miracles. Have you ever thought that cooking and baking is a sort of a miracle – every time you take raw ingredients and turn them into a delicious food that make all your senses so happy and content, you create a magic!
In Cook in Israel
, we witness the miracle of meeting strangers in the morning of our culinary tours and feeling like family at the end of the day. This magic happens around food and with cooking together. We introduce the food of Israel to visitors from all over the world. They discover new flavors and find them tasty. They take back home with them the recipes to introduce the magic of the new food to their families & friends.
Since the miracle of Chanukah was the miracle of a small flask of oil keeping the flame in the Temple alight for eight days, it is traditional to eat food with oil - in other words, fried foods.
Normally we avoid fried food for health reasons but to keep the tradition in Chanukah, we make 'Levivot' ('latkes') traditional fried potato pancakes and 'Soufganiot', Chanukah deep-fried doughnuts.
I will share here some traditional home made recipes and some varieties with tips to low the oil absorption.
Chanukah 'Levivot' - Potatos Pancakes / Jewish Polish style
4 – 5 Potatoes, peeled
2 Tbs. flour or potato flour
1 tsp. salt (put less salt if you want to eat it with sugar)
1. Grate the potatoes in a crude grater.
2. Squeeze properly and mix with the flour, egg, salt and pepper.
3. Heat oil in a wide pan.
4. Add batter by the tablespoonful and fry from both sides until browned and crisp.
5. To keep crisp place them on a grid until ready to serve.
6. Serve with sour cream or sugar. Best hot out of the pan.
Varieties to add to the mixture before frying:
1 onion grated
1 sweet potato grated
1 celery root grated
2 carrots grated
Chanukah 'Levivot' - Potatoes Pancakes / Jewish Iraqi style
4 Tbs. chopped parsley
1 chopped garlic
3 Tbs. flour
Salt and Pepper
1. Boil the potatoes with the skin until half soft.
2. Peel the potatoes and coarsely grate them.
3. Stir in the flour, parsley, eggs, garlic, salt and pepper.
4. Heat oil in a wide pan.
5. Add batter by the tablespoonful and fry from both sides until browned and crisp.
6. Serve with sour cream or yogurt.
'Soufganiot' – Chanukah Doughnuts with Cheese
1 1/4 cups flour, self raising
250 grams white soft cheese
2 Tbs. canola oil
1/4 cup sugar
Zest of 1/2 lemon – (optional)
Pinch of salt
Strawberry jam - option
1. Mix all the ingredients and leave to rest about half an hour.
2. Heat oil in a cooking pot.
3. Make small balls with a spoon, roll them in flour and fry until golden.
4. Serve with powdered sugar or jam.
* Adding cheese or yogurt, to the batter reduce oil absorption of the doughnuts.
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