The City Magazine Since 1975

Dottie’s Potato Latkes

December 2020
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1 cup schmaltz (clarified chicken or goose fat), can be purchased online or substitute peanut or canola oil 
5 Tbs. olive oil, divided
2 large Idaho potatoes (approx. 2 lbs.)
1 large yellow onion (approx 1 lb.)
2 eggs
1/4 cup matzo meal
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. white pepper
1 pinch nutmeg


Line a cookie sheet with paper towels. Add the schmaltz and three tablespoons of olive oil to a large sauté pan (should equal 1/4 inch of oil in the pan) and preheat over low heat. 

Grate the potatoes and onion on the large holes of a box grater. Transfer the mixture to a clean dish towel or cheese cloth and squeeze out as much of the liquid as possible. Work quickly to help prevent the potatoes from oxidizing. 

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add the eggs, matzo meal, remaining olive oil, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Mix until the matzo is absorbed. If the batter looks runny, add a little more matzo meal. 

Raise the heat of the sauté pan to medium–high. Once the oil is hot, drop a little of the batter in the hot oil to test the temperature of the oil; it should sizzle. Taste the test batter and adjust seasoning. 

Fill a four-ounce scoop and drop the batter into the hot pan. Use a spatula to flatten and shape it into a disk. Cook four latkes at a time. When the edges of the latkes are brown and crispy, about three to four minutes, flip. Cook until the second side is deeply browned, about another three to four minutes. Transfer the latkes to the baking sheet lined with paper towels to drain. 

Repeat with the remaining batter.

Serve with sour cream and applesauce