Latkes

I just made latkes using CI's method of nuking the shredded potatoes a bit, and the fresh out of the pan latkes were absolutely perfect. The ones held in the oven -225 degree convection oven on a baking rack until people went for seconds were..meh. Not exactly soggy, but dull. Is there a secret to holding latkes, or is this just one of those treats that the cook stays in the kitchen with people line up holding their plates?

  • Posted by: Melusine
  • December 15, 2014
  • 3448 views
  • 7 Comments

7 Comments

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Kristen W.
Kristen W. December 16, 2014

Hi Melusine. I asked a similar use toon a while ago. Search the hotline for "keeping pancakes crispy" -- there were some helpful suggestions.

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Kristen W.
Kristen W. December 16, 2014

"Use toon"??? That was supposed to be "QUESTION!"

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louisez
louisez December 16, 2014


I haven't used that method or recipe, but for many years have made latkes ahead of time (so I can visit with guests). When I learned to make latkes, I learned a few rules that may help. When I make them, I drop them by the tablespoon and flatten them a bit (if they're too thick, they won't be crispy). Never turn them more than once (so they don't absorb too much oil, which can make them soggy). Drain well on paper towels and transfer to cookie sheets if keeping warm or racks if you're going to freeze them -- but only in one layer (stacking them can lead to sogginess). Can keep warm at 250 or freeze (let cool completely. Freeze in single layers and put in freezer bags after completely frozen). Cook directly from frozen (don't defrost) at 350 (in one layer) till hot and crisp (about 20 minutes). I hope this helps.
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amysarah
amysarah December 16, 2014

It's really important to only put a single layer on the pan. If you stack/overlap them too much in the oven, they'll steam and lose their crispiness.

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ChefJune
ChefJune December 16, 2014

If I'm keeping them warm, I put them on a rack over a sheet pan and cover loosely with foil in a warming oven. I have never nuked the shredded potatoes first. Not sure what the purpose of that would be. CAVEAT: serving fried food to "company" pretty much ensures you (or a person you hire/hornswaggle) will be int he kitchen attending to the frying process. Fried food is ALWAYS best a la minute.

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keg72
keg72 December 16, 2014

Melusine, with regard to how the first batch turned out, do you think it was worth the extra effort? I was intrigued by that recipe.

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Melusine
Melusine December 17, 2014

I'm not an expert latke maker, but The Friend loves them and he'd had a really bad day at work. I had sour cream and apple butter in the fridge and the recipe was in last week's CI featured recipe, so I tried it. The fresh batch was perfect - crispy outsides and creamy middles. They were not just fried shredded potatoes. I probably made them too thick, which, as Louisez commented, meant they didn't hold well. The CI article explains the science behind the brief pre-cooking in the microwave. The process took the "are they done in the middle" stress out of the equation for me, and the end result was really, really good.

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