Saturday, April 23, 2011

potato latkes with apple confit and crispy sage

Can you still eat latkes at Passover, or are they just a Hanukkah thing? Because I made this kick ass latke recipe back in December, but I still think it would be awesomely delicious now.

These latkes are made with shredded potatoes and shallots, and are topped with a sweet apple "confit," and crispy sage leaves. Very delicious. Of course, if I am being honest, this dish is definitely a prime example of fancy language elevating a rather humble concept. OK, yes, crispy sage is an upscale addition to the recipe, but apple confit? Really? Come on, you made latkes with applesauce.

Applesauce or apple confit, the condiment was very easy to make. I didn't peel the apples like the recipe called for, just chopped them up and threw them in the pan with some melted butter, lemon juice and sugar. Five minutes later, you've got lovely soft apples perfect for serving with pork chops, or in this case, potato latkes.

The latkes were a little more involved. Shred the potatoes, and then let them sit in a bowl of cold water for a half hour. After the squeezing the potatoes dry with a paper towel, mix them with diced shallots, flour, eggs and salt and pepper. At this point, the recipe does something smart. What I was most worried about was the latkes falling apart in the pan, or being really soggy, but that wasn't an issue at all after you let them drain in a mesh strainer over a bowl for a half hour. This really helped to get rid of a lot of the excess moisture, ensuring nice crispy potato cakes. Brilliant. Then you fry them in oil over medium high heat for a couple of minutes on each side. Actually, I guess they aren't that involved either.

To serve, top them off with your apple confit. Then, to gild the lily, simply lightly fry sage leaves in some butter and sprinkle them atop your latkes. It's a great touch, really. Light and crispy, and a nice mix of sweet and savory, these latkes were absolutely delicious.

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