Israeli breakfast in latke form! Yes! Israeli Breakfast Latkes with Homemade Schug are totally acceptable to eat before noon. Or after noon.
It was a busy week of little sleep- seeing the sites, eating the hummus (I am actually 60% hummus at this point. Fact.), absorbing the wisdom, and then working on Hanukkah orders for ModernTribe until 2am every day. Wheeee. I slept 10 hours last night and feel like a new person.
I thought I would be sick of hummus and eggplant and tahini by now, but not even close. If you have been to Israel before (and if you haven’t, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR- go!) you may remember the breakfasts. When breakfast is included at your hotel in the US of A, it’s often dry toast, a muffin or a waffle shaped like Texas (which I always go for).
In Israel it is row after row of warm babka, pickled things, yogurts and cheeses and fruit and nuts and eggs and hummus and spicy sauces omg.
You can eat enough at breakfast to last you the rest of the day and then some. I always started my day with some combination of Israeli salad, labneh with za’atar, a boureka, hummus, eggs and strong coffee. The best! So with Hanukkah in less than one week (I promise I’ve been good this year, Hanukkah Harry!) I decided to transform my favorite breakfast into latke form. You can get creative with your toppings, but definitely include some homemade Schug (a Yemenite spicy condiment) for good measure. Shalom! I love the idea of serving these as a build-your-own buffet format. Just like in Israel! Just don’t take all the pickles. 😉
- 4 jalapenos, de-veined and seeded (careful! Wear gloves!)
- 2 cups cilantro leaves
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
- For Latkes:
- 3 medium russet potatoes (1 pound), washed well
- 2 tablespoons onion, diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 egg, whisked
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- For garnish:
- Israeli pickles
- Israeli salad
- Soft boiled eggs
- Start with making your schug. You can make it up to a week in advance! Use it like hot sauce on everything. In a food processor, combine jalapenos, cilantro, garlic, cumin, and cardamom. Add lemon juice and olive oil until you have a texture you like, I like it chunky. Season with salt to taste.
- To make latkes, prepare a large bowl of ice water and set aside. Peel and shred your potatoes by hand or with a food processor. Place in the bowl of ice water and let sit for 10 minutes. Then, drain water through a sieve placed over another bowl. Let water sit so starch can settle to the bottom. Wring out potatoes with a cheesecloth or towel, removing all moisture. Drain water from bowl, reserving starch.
- Mix potatoes, onion, garlic, egg, flour and salt together in a large bowl. Add in starch and mix that up.
- Heat oil in a large pan over medium-high heat until the oil is hot.
- Drop large spoonfuls of the potato mixture into the oil in batches, and flatten them down to form ½ inch patties. Brown on one side, about 2 minutes, and then flip and brown the other.
- Place on paper towels to absorb any excess oil and sprinkle with more salt.
- Serve hot with schug, labneh, pickles, Israeli salad, feta, hummus, eggs, etc. etc!