This Hack Makes the Crispiest Latkes Ever in Less than 20 Minutes
There’s no peeling, grating or wringing.
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Latkes are typically a labor of love. You’ve got to peel those potatoes. You’ve got to grate those potatoes, preferably by hand, because a little bit of grated knuckle skin in there makes them taste better. You’ve got to wring out your grated potatoes as much as humanly possible because less moisture equals crispier results. These are the rules of latke making — or so we thought.
Food Network Supervising Culinary Producer Dana Beninati has a latke making hack that’ll make every bubbie proud. During her Shortcut Latkes class on the Food Network Kitchen app, she explains why she dreamed up the technique: "I grew up with my maternal grandmother, Florence, teaching me how to make latkes. And I remember spending what felt like endless amounts of hours shredding potatoes to make her latkes," Beninati explains. "And her latkes were so good, but I’d think she’d be really proud of this recipe too. It cuts out the part that I don’t love: shredding potatoes."
Are you ready for it?
Instead of grating your own potatoes, simply start with shredded refrigerated hash browns. Yep, the kind that you buy in a bag from the supermarket. Not only are they pre-peeled and shredded, but also, they’re dry to the touch. The latkes they make have soft, fluffy interiors and are way crispier than traditional latkes.
All you have to do is rip open that bag and dump them into a bowl. If your hash browns are frozen instead of refrigerated, make sure you thaw them in the fridge overnight (or microwave them in short increments at low power). Then mix up the hash browns with egg, a bit of all-purpose flour and chopped scallions, which contain less moisture than grated onion and impart bright onion-y flavor. Season the potatoes with salt and pepper, form them into patties, and fry 'em up in a pan filled with 350-degree F oil. You’ll know they’re ready to flip when they’re deeply golden brown on the edges — resist the urge to fiddle and check them because then they’ll fall apart.
Because we know you’re always trying to think of ways to spend more time with family and less time in the kitchen, Beninati brilliantly figured out a way to make these latkes ahead of time. You can freeze the raw patties by laying them flat between sheets of wax paper in a zip-top bag. Then fry them directly from frozen, simply lowering the oil temperature to 325 degrees F and frying them for a bit longer. Alternatively, you could fry all of them in advance, freeze them and bake them in an oven on a cooling rack.
Now that we’ve figured out how to make crispy latkes in less than twenty minutes, the only thing we’re still debating is: apple sauce, sour cream or both?