Sweet Potato Latkes! Previously on our blog, we’ve focused on holiday recipes. This week I wanted to include one of my family’s favorite Hanukkah dishes – because what is Hanukkah without latkes? While typically made with white potatoes, I’ve been doing sweet potato latkes for years. My son doesn’t even know anything different, so to him, latkes are always made with sweet potatoes. His conclusion – they’re delicious!

First, If you want your latkes to look more like traditional white potato latkes, use Japanese Sweet Potatoes or Hannah Yams that have a tan-colored flesh. They also tend to be a little more dry which works best in latkes. However, any sweet potato will do.

For frying, it is important to get the oil hot enough and also important to keep it evenly hot. I find that a cast-iron skillet works best since cast-iron distributes heat more evenly and creates a crispier texture than other pans. If you’re skeptical, one year, a friend and I had a latke cook off where she used her traditional non-stick pan that she swore was superior. In contrast, I used my cast-iron skillet. By the end of the night, she conceded. Conclusion: Cast-iron made a superior latke. Hence, we fried the remaining latkes in my cast-iron skillet. Try it and see what a difference it makes!

Most important, traditional Hanukkah recipes are cooked in oil or fried. Fortunately, that isn’t a problem for the ALWAYS HUNGRY? program. We’re not afraid of fat! With the addition of a little homemade applesauce (see recipe below) or sour cream, these latkes are sure to please the whole family.

Finally, for the Vegans out there, I find that the egg-free latkes are every bit as good as the traditional ones. Egg allergies or a vegan coming for dinner won’t hold you back this year because now you also have a delicious option for them. Try both and make your own conclusion.