Amy says… This recipe makes me happy because…it reminds me of when I spent the holidays with my dad, who died 20 years ago. He was a great cook and made the perfect potato pancakes—really thin and crispy. Every time I make them now, I know he’d be so proud of me, because of how good they taste, and how I finally followed my passion and became a chef. “
Yields approx. 20 pancakes ( 3” round)
4 large russet potatoes, peeled and grated
1 medium yellow onion, finely grated
1/3 cup matzo meal, plus additional to soak up liquid
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon pepper, plus more to taste
Vegetable oil for frying
Sour cream and apple sauce
Dad’s Potato Pancakes
In a large mixing bowl, combine potatoes and
all other ingredients.
In large nonstick pan, heat 1/4 inch of oil. (If the pancake
browns quickly, turn down the heat to allow pancake
to brown slowly.) Add more oil to pan if necessary: The
pancakes should not touch the bottom of the pan.
Spoon 2 tablespoons of potato mixture into hot oil.
Flatten out with potato masher until about 1/4 inch thick.
Turn when edges are crisp and bottom is completely
dark golden brown.
Remove when both sides are almost
Add more matzo meal to mixing bowl to soak up
excess liquid, as needed.
Remove to paper towel to dry.
Serve hot immediately with sour cream and apple sauce.
Keep 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch of oil in the pan so the
pancakes are essentially floating in the oil.
Always grate everything by hand; use the
larger side of a box grater for the potatoes,
and the small holes for the onion.
Keep adding small handfuls of matzo meal
(never flour!) as needed to soak up
the extra liquid in the potato mixture
as you’re making them.
Make only a few pancakes with the first round
to determine if more salt, pepper and onion
are needed. When satisfied with the flavor,
continue with rest of mixture.
Drop the potato mixture by spoonfuls into the
oil. Take a potato masher (one with holes) and
flatten each one until about 1/4 inch thick. This
makes for pancakes that are crispy and
not mushy inside.
Don’t remove the pancakes until they are
browned on both sides. This will not only make
them taste better but they’ll stay crispy as you
make the rest of the pancakes. If the middle of
the pancakes is too light, they will get soggy as
soon as they’re put on the paper towel.