Serious Eats: Recipes

Brandade Potato Latkes

[Photograph: Sabra Krock]

Since I was on the prowl for Hanukkah recipes in Joan Nathan's Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous, a good latke was the first order of business. Nathan has three different potato pancake preparations in the book, but for me, these Brandade Potato Latkes truly capture the spirit of a French-accented Hanukkah celebration. The recipe combines brandade, a whipped cod spread popular in the South of France with a mashed potato latke.

As someone who grew up with a more traditional American-Jewish style of latke served with plenty of sour cream and apple sauce, this Frenchified version had me both intrigued and a little nervous. Was fish a flavor that I really wanted to incorporate into my latkes? Or would these guys leave me pining for a plainer pancake?

As it turned out, these unusual latkes were absolutely incredible—more of an elegant appetizer than your typical Hanukkah latke: think croquette more than pancake. The crisp exterior opened to reveal a creamy potato filling with mild hints of cod and thyme. The flavors were elegant and simple, and not at all fishy. Taking a cue from the photo that accompanied the recipe, I served mine with a little salad of orange segments and shaved fennel.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous to give away this week.

Adapted from Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous by Joan Nathan. Copyright © 2010. Published by Knopf. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved.

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