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(Olaf Speier/Getty Images/iStockphoto)
(Olaf Speier/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The best basic latkes Add to ...

Originally published on December 13, 2011.

I use self-rising flour to make these irresistibly lacy and crisp latkes. In theory, it makes them lighter. But feel free to use all-purpose flour if that’s what’s in your cupboard. If you have the time, it’s easy to make your own applesauce. Simmer chunks of red-skinned apples in a covered pot with a spoonful of water before passing through a food mill; the result is a rosy pink sauce far superior to anything store bought.

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  • Servings: 16 pancakes


4 large russet potatoes

1 onion

1 egg

2 tablespoons self-rising flour

Salt and pepper

Vegetable oil for frying

Sour cream and applesauce


Peel and grate potatoes and onion. (Food processors are nothing to be ashamed of.) Transfer mixture to a colander and squeeze out excess moisture. In a large bowl, combine grated mixture, egg and flour. Season well with salt and pepper.

Heat a quarter inch of oil in a large heavy skillet over moderate heat. Drop mixture into skillet, a few spoonfuls at a time. (For crisp, lacy pancakes, flatten with a spoon and leave the edges messy.) Fry in batches, turning once, for 4 minutes a side or until golden brown.

Drain on paper towels and serve immediately with sour cream and applesauce.

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