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Subject: Potato Pancakes
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

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From: Jill 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 14:40:52 -0500
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I've got some leftover mashed potatoes.  My Scottish grandmother made potato
pancakes from leftover mashed.

My German grandmother made latkes... grated potato pancakes.

Which do you prefer?

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From: JoeSpareBedroom 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 19:47:02 GMT
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Nonsense. Nobody can make pancakes from mashed potatoes.

Cite, please.

1..
2....
3......

JUST KIDDING, JILL! 

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From: Dave Smith 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 16:03:46 -0400
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Latkes.... there is no competition there.

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From: Sqwertz 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 23:23:39 GMT
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> Latkes.... there is no competition there.

Yep - they have a much better texture.  They get much crispier.

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From: Christine Dabney 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 17:26:42 -0600
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>> Latkes.... there is no competition there.

This is something I have had in mind to try for some time now.  I
meant to do it last year, but things happened so I never got around to
it.   

I guess I will have to start perusing the archives to see what
everyone recommends as to fixing these.

Christine, whose mind is turning towards cooler weather foods.

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From: agrunspan 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 16:49:47 -0500
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My grandmother made grated latkes (always with a bit of knuckle from 
the grater). She also put in a tablespoon or two of melted shmaltz 
(rendered chicken fat) which upped the flavor ante to over 100.

My mother-in-law made pure vegetarian, mashed potato latkes.

Having eaten both for almost three decades, the grated latkes with 
shmaltz win hands down.

April G.
San Antonio, TX
http://agru.etsy.com

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From: Sqwertz 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 18:27:17 -0500
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I fry my hash browns and latkes in chicken fat whenever possible
(80% of the time).  My chicken fat comes from rendered chicken
skins and neck/thigh fat.  The skins are then eaten as chicken
skin chicaronnes and the fat frozen for exclusive use of frying
potatoes.

Like so: http://i10.tinypic.com/4q8ab2e.jpg

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From: Christine Dabney 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 17:31:52 -0600
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>I fry my hash browns and latkes in chicken fat whenever possible
>(80% of the time).  My chicken fat comes from rendered chicken

>Like so: http://i10.tinypic.com/4q8ab2e.jpg

I wish I could get mine to look like yours.  ;)

I save chicken fat whenever I can as well.  I have a bag of chicken
fat pieces in my freezer...must be about time to render it.  I tend to
use the fatty pieces from whole chickens, the big gobs of it just
inside the cavity.  Those gobs don't render down to the crispy bits
you have...at least I have never been able to get them that way.

============================

From: Sqwertz 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 19:11:02 -0500
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> I save chicken fat whenever I can as well.  I have a bag of chicken
> fat pieces in my freezer...must be about time to render it.  I tend to

I render the whole "fat and skin bag" at once.  What you see
there are just the remaining skins.  The larger cavity fat
globules just melt into liquid for the most part.

It's important to simmer at low heat until you don't see any moe
bubbles from the skins.  This means all the water had been drawn
out.  There is one point about halfway through the frying where
they all stick together like a huge ball of glue.  Just keep
cooking and they'll separate.

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From: agrunspan 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 08:39:48 -0500
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> I fry my hash browns and latkes in chicken fat whenever possible
> (80% of the time).  My chicken fat comes from rendered chicken

> Like so: http://i10.tinypic.com/4q8ab2e.jpg

SIGH! My grandmother would fry the small bits of chicken fat with onion 
until both were crispy and the pan was filled with the rendered fat. 
Then the rendered fat would go into a jar and the brown bits (gribbenes 
and tsibele in Yiddish) would go into a bowl and we kids would eat them 
like popcorn.

The shmaltz (rendered fat) also went into matzoh balls for soup and as a 
spread on white bread with a shake of salt on top for healthy measure!

Ah -- I dread finding out what my arteries look like today. But it was 
good!!!

April G.
San Antonio, TX
http://agru.etsy.com


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From: Becca 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 10:35:06 -0500
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> The shmaltz (rendered fat) also went into matzoh balls for soup and as a 
> spread on white bread with a shake of salt on top for healthy measure!

Some things stay the same.  Your grandmother used shmaltz in cooking, 
and my grandmother used the fat from crawfish heads. She also used shmaltz.

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From: Sheldon Telemarketer 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 09:05:53 -0700
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> Some things stay the same.  Your grandmother used shmaltz in cooking,
> and my grandmother used the fat from crawfish heads. She also used shmaltz.

Schmaltz is good (nothing builds zoftig better) but isn't seafood
considered brain food... crawfish head fat has to be the perfect
combination, brain food and breast food! ;)

Someone oughta bottle that stuff.

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From: Serene 
Date: Sat, 13 Oct 2007 21:05:19 -0700
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agrunspan wrote:

> SIGH! My grandmother would fry the small bits of chicken fat with onion 
> until both were crispy and the pan was filled with the rendered fat. 
> Then the rendered fat would go into a jar and the brown bits (gribbenes 
> and tsibele in Yiddish) would go into a bowl and we kids would eat them 
> like popcorn.

*nodnod* I just finished up the last of the gribenes from the last 
batch.  Yesterday, I had schmaltz on toast for breakfast. Outstanding!

> The shmaltz (rendered fat) also went into matzoh balls for soup and as a 
> spread on white bread with a shake of salt on top for healthy measure!

Yep. Schmalt's real purpose in our house was to put into the 
knaedlach (matzoh-ball) soup.  Mmmmmmm. Mom used to put so much 
schmaltz and onion in the knaedlachs that I was never sure how they 
held together.

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From: azazello[at]koroviev.de (Victor Sack)
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 23:58:23 +0200
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jmcquown  wrote:

> I've got some leftover mashed potatoes.  My Scottish grandmother made potato
> pancakes from leftover mashed.
> 
> My German grandmother made latkes... grated potato pancakes.

She must have had another name for them, or else she learnt to make them
in America.  "Latke" (from the South Russian/Ukrainian dialect word
"latka" or "oladka", a variation of the standard "oladya") has long been
adopted into Yiddish in those areas and is now used in America.  It has
never been used in any German-speaking countries, where this kind of
potato pancakes are variously called  Reibekuchen, Rivkooche,
Reiberdatschi, Kartoffelpuffer, Reibeplätzchen, etc.

> Which do you prefer?

Another kind of potato pancakes popular in the northern parts of the
Rhineland called Pillekuchen, which is similiar in concept to the
traditionally made Swiss Rösti and even somewhat to some versions of the
American hash browns.  Here is a recipe adapted from _Kulinarische
Streifzüge durch das Rheinland_ by Hannes Schmitz. 

                Bergischer Pillekuchen 

1 kg (2 pounds) potatoes 
about 125 g (4.4 ounces) streaky bacon (in a piece, not in thin rashers)
2 onions 
1 1/2 teaspoons salt 
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground pepper 
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground nutmeg 
3 eggs 
2 tablespoons flour 
2 tablespoons sour cream 

Peel and rinse the potatoes and cut them in thin sticks, (as for
matchstick or shoestring potatoes).  Cube the streaky bacon and fry it
in a large pan until it gives off some fat.  Mince the onions, add them
to the bacon and fry until soft.  Add the potatoes and continue to fry,
turning them over often, until golden brown.  Add the seasoning.  Mix
the eggs, flour and sour cream, with a bit of salt and pepper, pour the
mixture over the potatoes and let it thicken.  Serve with green salad.

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From: jmcquown 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 23:24:12 -0500
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Victor Sack wrote:
> jmcquown wrote:
>> My German grandmother made latkes... grated potato pancakes.
>
> She must have had another name for them, or else she learnt to make
> them in America.  "Latke" (from the South Russian/Ukrainian dialect
> word "latka" or "oladka", a variation of the standard "oladya") has
> long been adopted into Yiddish in those areas and is now used in
> America.

She was born here although she was of German descent (her maiden name was
Ruffner and her parents were Reithmillers).  So yes, she learned to make
them here.

>It has never been used in any German-speaking countries,
> where this kind of potato pancakes are variously called  Reibekuchen,
> Rivkooche, Reiberdatschi, Kartoffelpuffer, Reibeplätzchen, etc.

Whatever, dear!  They're grated potato pancakes as opposed to the ones made
from leftover mashed potatoes.

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From: azazello[at]koroviev.de (Victor Sack)
Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2007 07:33:49 +0200
--------
jmcquown  wrote:

> She was born here although she was of German descent (her maiden name was
> Ruffner and her parents were Reithmillers).

Reithmüllers, surely?

> >It has never been used in any German-speaking countries,
> > where this kind of potato pancakes are variously called  Reibekuchen,
> > Rivkooche, Reiberdatschi, Kartoffelpuffer, Reibeplätzchen, etc.
> >
> Whatever, dear!  They're grated potato pancakes as opposed to the ones made
> from leftover mashed potatoes.

Every name has its place in its proper context.  The one you invoked
just happened to be ridiculous, as would be the one with the
Reiberdatschi from the Rhineland, for example.

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From: kilikini 
Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2007 07:13:50 -0400
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Victor Sack wrote:
> Every name has its place in its proper context.  The one you invoked
> just happened to be ridiculous, as would be the one with the
> Reiberdatschi from the Rhineland, for example.

Trust me, I've been working on her genealogy.  Riethmiller has been a name 
here in the U.S. for close to 200 years, now.  The spellings of names change 
for various reasons.  Chill out.

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From: azazello[at]koroviev.de (Victor Sack)
Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2007 14:38:10 +0200
--------
Wake up and pay attention, already!  Do you - either of you - even know
what "context" means in either of your problems - different ones in this
case - with the concept?  Or, in your own particular case, even of how
to quote for context?

ObPotatoPancakes:  Draniki, a very nice Belorussion version of potato
pancakes.  As most other Belorussion potato dishes, this one requires a
combination of more than one cooking methods (frying and baking in this
case).

Draniki (also called "deruny", both words coming from "drat'", "to tear
to pieces")

1 kg (2 lb) potatoes
50 g (2 oz) rye flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
salt
600 ml (1 pint) milk
3-4 tablespoons sunflower oil
sour cream

Grate the potatoes without squeezing out the liquid, mix with the flour,
baking soda and salt, and allow to stand for 10 minutes.  Form into a
batter by mixing with the milk.  Fry the pancakes in a hot frying pan,
greased with a little sunflower oil.  Place in an ovenproof dish, cover
with sour cream and bake in the oven (180°C/350°F) for 5-7 minutes.

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From: Kswck 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 19:07:42 -0400
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Coat em in some crushed corn flakes and pan fry. 

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From: Edwin Pawlowski 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 02:38:03 GMT
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> Which do you prefer?

Prefer a latke, but we rarely have them.  I do like to add a few things to 
the leftover mashed though, and fry them up.  Never met a potato that I 
didn't like. 

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From: Bob Terwilliger 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 20:19:48 -0700
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> Which do you prefer?

I much prefer grated potato pancakes. I don't care for the mashed-potato 
version at all. Given leftover mashed potatoes, I might try to make gnocchi.

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From: Choco 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 21:04:10 -0700
--------
Hi Jill, my Lithuanian grandmother used to make potatoe pancakes as
well. She would grate them & then wrap them in a cloth to wring all
the moisture out of them. they were delicious! Lara.

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From: Jen 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 08:58:52 GMT
--------
> Hi Jill, my Lithuanian grandmother used to make potatoe pancakes as
> well. She would grate them & then wrap them in a cloth to wring all
> the moisture out of them. they were delicious! Lara.

I was just about to write in exactly the same thing.  My Lithuanian Dad used 
to make them sometimes.  He called them potato pancakes, I don't know what 
he called them in Lithuanian.

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From: sandi 
Date: 28 Sep 2007 23:30:08 GMT
--------
> Hi Jill, my Lithuanian grandmother used to make potatoe
> pancakes as well. She would grate them & then wrap them in a
> cloth to wring all the moisture out of them. they were
> delicious! Lara. 

Yes.  Grated, rinsed, moisture wrung out.  
Egg, flour, salt, pepper, onion and fry.

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From: Steve Y 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 07:31:40 +0200
--------
> Which do you prefer?

Depends on which meal we are talking about.

Potato pancakes are nice with a proper fried (British) breakfast, grated 
potato patties are better as part of a dinner/supper that involves a 
sauce of some kind.

I have never tried making potato pancakes with cold leftover spuds 
though, I've always made them whilst the spuds were still hot.

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From: MayQueen 
Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2007 23:10:46 -0700
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> Which do you prefer?

I don't make them from leftover potatoes, but I do make them from pretty 
much mashed consistency.

Make sure to use peanut oil when you cook them.  Makes all the 
difference in the taste of the final product.

Oh yum!  It's getting to be that time of year to make them again.

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From: George 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 07:35:20 -0400
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I prefer latkes. The made from sweet potatoes version is also good.

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From: Becca 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 10:25:12 -0500
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George wrote:

> I prefer latkes. The made from sweet potatoes version is also good.

At Katz's Deli, I ordered a sweet potato knish, but I never had a sweet 
potato latke.  Sounds good.

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From: jmcquown 
Date: fri, 28 Sep 2007 11:37:02 -0500
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> I prefer latkes. The made from sweet potatoes version is also good.

Ah yes, sweet potatoes are often overlooked.  They make for nice shoe-string
fries, too :)

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From: stark 
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 05:07:42 -0700
--------
> I've got some leftover mashed potatoes.  My Scottish grandmother made potato
> pancakes from leftover mashed.
>
> My German grandmother made latkes... grated potato pancakes.
>
> Which do you prefer?

Un, I don't think you have a choice. Unless you can grate leftover
mash.

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From: Serene 
Date: Sat, 13 Oct 2007 20:50:40 -0700
--------
> Which do you prefer?

Latkes, hands down, but I have a Jewish mother and total apathy 
toward mashed potatoes.

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From: Wayne Boatwright 
Date: Sun, 14 Oct 2007 04:51:04 GMT
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My mom always called those made from mashed potatoes, potato patties.  
Those from fresh shredded potatoes were latkes.

I like both for different purposes...  Potato patties as an accompaniment 
to a meal (preferably beef).  They contained mashed potatoes, flour, egg, 
and onion.

I prefer potato pancakes (latkes) as a standalone, served with sour cream 
and homemade applesauce. 


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