If you want to make latkes like Joshua Marcus of Josh's Deli, then you must first make chicken soup. After you have made chicken soup, then you must cool it in the refrigerator. After a few hours, a white, pasty substance will rise to the brim of the surface. Skim it off with a spoon and reserve.
This substance, fellow latke lovers, is what is known as schmaltz. (You can also get it from roasting a whole bird or sauteing chicken skin and fat.) This is the key to Marcus' delectable potato pancakes.
Apart from the schmaltz, Marcus keeps his latke recipe simple. "One potato to one egg," he says. When prompted about the type of potato, Marcus responds: "Russet potato, because it's what's there. I don't really believe in the difference between types of potatoes. Once you mix it all with eggs and onions, they will all be delicious."
There aren't any secret techniques when it comes to this recipe. It's just straight-forward, old-fashioned, basic potato pancake goodness.
Joshua Marcus' Potato Latkes
Makes about 10 - 15 latkes
4 large russet potatoes
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
2 - 3 tablespoons chicken schmaltz (or vegetable oil, bacon fat, etc)
1. Peel the potatoes and shred in a food processor or box grater. Gather the shreds between your hands and squeeze out the excess moisture. Place the shredded potato and red onion in a bowl. Combine the eggs, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Stir and then add to the potato-onion mixture.
Smell that sizzling schmaltz
2. Warm a skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon schmaltz. Form round pancakes (about 1/4 - 1/2 cup of mixture each) and drop into the skillet, four pancakes at a time. Sear for 2 - 3 minutes on each side until cooked through. Add more schmaltz as needed. Serve with apple sauce, sour cream, or salmon roe.
Searing four latkes
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