Hanukkah recipes

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Crispy Rice Latkes

Friday, November 23rd, 2018

Call ’em crispy rice latkes, call ’em snap crackle and pop cakes, call ’em crispy crack or even tahdig – just do yourself a favor and make them, ok??

These leftover sushi rice cakes were a total afterthought the morning after a make-your-own-sushi-roll for dinner night. I usually just stir fry my leftover rice and top it with a runny egg for breakfast the next morning but this time, I decided to crisp it up into what basically turned into a crack cake. It’s tahdig on steroids and solves the soggy latke problem, because even hours later, the latkes remained super crispy.

I think my biggest problem was what to top them with but I solved it pretty fast because runny eggs are my jam, especially when they are jammy soft boiled ones. But honestly, the options are endless. Lox and creme fraiche if you’re feeling fancy. Caviar if you really want to take it over the top. Some tuna tartare if you want to go Asian, or some sesame pulled beef if you’re feeling meaty.

And if you really want to be fancy, mix the scallions INTO the rice before frying. Or add any fillings of your choice. ENDLESS. OPTIONS.

Chanukah has been so good to me. It gave me life (I was born on the 5th night), and it celebrates my Anniversary (I got married on my birthday). I’ve always felt a special connection to the holiday of fried food, donuts and wine + cheese and I secretly wonder if it’s one of the reasons I was born with the foodie gene!

This Chanukah is especially momentous because I get to share the holiday with so many of my fans and followers at my local book signings in Williams Sonoma and Bloomingdales! I could not be more excited to share some of my favorite Chanukah recipes in some of my favorite stores. I am feeling so. very. blessed. Thank you all for making this year so special to me!

Wishing you and yours a very Happy Chanukah!

Other Latke Recipes:

salami potato latkes
sabich latkes
falatkes (falafel latkes)
poutine latkes
confetti latkes
butternut squash latkes
cheese latkes

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Potato Latke Funnel Cakes

Thursday, December 8th, 2016

Yay!!!!! Chanukah, the festival of donuts, potato latkes and all things fried is upon us, and I couldn’t be happier!! I was lucky enough to be born on the festival of fattening foods…uh…I mean….lights, so all the more reason to allow myself to really s.p.l.u.r.g.e.

I even got married on my birthday so between my anniversary, my birthday, and the holiday, it’s an eight day food fest with no restrictions. I’m not a big fryer during the year so when Chanukah comes around, I break out the gallon-sized canola oil and get to it.

I love all the donut making and latke topping, but I especially love to make other fun fried food that I don’t get around to enjoying otherwise. Like fried oreos, fried ice cream and funnel cakes! I also go savory with fried lasagna stripszucchini chips and even beer battered salami! When I said I go all out, I meant it! (just ask my scale after the eight days are up!)

I’ve had some really fun latke ideas over the past few years, including my poutine latkes that landed me on the front page of The Wall Street Journal and my viral falafel latkes which turned into the ultimate sabich. I had to up the ante this year, and and what better way than fusing two of my favorite Chanukah indulgences – latkes and funnel cakes!

If you’ve never had a funnel cake, I’m sorry. It’s basically a thick pancake dough that’s piped into hot oil for a crispy sweet fried dough that gets covered in powdered sugar. It’s. so. good. I decided to go savory with the same concept by incorporating mashed potatoes and ranch seasoning into the dough. It was a really good idea. Just try it and you’ll see!

The potato dough takes a little getting used to, so I suggest practicing with a few mini cakes at first. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll be banging out potato latke funnel cakes like no-ones business! Just try not to eat the whole batch before your company arrives. They’re especially good straight out of the fryer!

This recipe was actually my first time working with ranch seasoning and I am hooked! Where has this addictive stuff been my entire life? Potatoes and ranch make such a perfect pairing, I can’t believe I’ve been eating chips without it until now.

If you can’t get your hands on one of these packets, just season up your potatoes to taste with the spices of your choice. My Greek yogurt ranch dip can give you some ideas!

I’m working on some other fun Chanukah recipes including a donut that you can drink (you’ll see!) and a super addictive twist on pb&j. Chanukah here we come!

What are your favorite deep fried foods to make for the holiday? I’d love to hear! Share them with me in the comments below.

In the meantime, get your stretchy skirts ready and stack up on that canola oil. You’re gonna need it!

Oh, and do yourself a favor and set your scale back 5 lbs, will you?


This post was sponsored by Lipton Kosher. All opinions are my own. 

Related Recipes:

sabich latkes
falafel latkes
poutine latkes
confetti latkes
butternut squash latkes

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Beer Battered Pumpkin Rings

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

I seem to create trends for myself when it comes to the holidays. Of course every Chanukah there’s a latke, and every Purim, a hamantasch. But it’s more than that. Every Succot, I post a different type of mechshie (a Syrian stuffed vegetable dish), every Purim, I do something else with salami. And it seems, every Chanukah, I post something with gourds (different varieties of pumpkin).

It wasn’t really on purpose, and I didn’t even realize it until I made these! First there was my amazing zucchini parmesan chips, then my Thanksgivukkah pumpkin ricotta cheese latkes with cranberry syrup (you MUST make these for Chanukah morning, they’re insanely good!), and finally my gluten free butternut squash latkes with ginger applesauce and curried sour cream.

This year, I’m continuing the trend using delicata squash – a small mild-flavored squash with an edible peel (you gotta love the no-peeling!). To make the most of my fried pumpkin idea, I decided to coat the squash in pumpkin beer batter. If you’ve never tried a pumpkin ale, it’s got a hint of pumpkin flavor from vine ripened pumpkin and harvest spices. It’s definitely up there with one of my favorite drinks, as well as one of my favorite batter ingredients!

What beer does for tempura batter is truly amazing. You can google it, of course, but  basically the foam, alcohol and carbon dioxide in the beer cause a chemical reaction when it hits the hot oil. It results in an incredibly crisp and light batter. And who doesn’t love a light and crispy coating?

It’s Chanukah after all, so exploring the best type of batter for deep frying is exactly the sort of research we should be doing! Fried latkes and donuts are all good, but there’s nothing like a deep fried oreo, some tempura-fried veggies or sweet and delicious apple fritter rings.

Traditionally, beer batter is used more in savory dishes, but I love to shake things up, so I added a little sugar and some more pumpkin spices, to really bring out the pumpkin flavor. What you get is an ultra-crunchy light coating that pair perfectly with what’s inside….delicata squash.

The only thing better than the pumpkin beer batter is what I put on top! Some cinnamon-scented powdered sugar! And to really take it to the next level, I created a maple GREEK yogurt dipping sauce – as an ode to the Chanukah miracle!

Now when you look at these beer battered pumpkin rings – what do you see? Come on, you all know you’re thinking of it…DONUTS! I love that these look just like the traditional fried Chanukah dessert, yet they’re something else entirely! How fun is that?!

And when you top ’em off with the thick Greek yogurt sauce, it looks just like frosting. And believe me when I tell you – this sauce is probably the best frosting you’ll ever taste! It’s even good for you – so how’s that for deguiltifying the whole beer-battered deep fried rings thing. They’ve even got squash inside, so you’re technically just eating veggies with greek yogurt, right? ;)

To get the recipe for my Beer Battered Pumpkin Rings with Greek Yogurt Dipping Sauce, head on over to my guest post on THE NOSHER!

Other Fried Chanukah Recipes:

zucchini parmesan chips
confetti latkes with harissa sour cream
gluten free butternut squash latkes
corned beef arancini
french fried chicken nuggets
spinach falafel burgers

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Confetti Latkes with Harissa Sour Cream

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013


True story. I’m somewhere late into my 9th month of pregnancy and a little something called Braxton Hicks comes to pay me a visit. If you’re not familiar, Braxton Hicks are false labor pains that feel almost like the real thing. They play with your head, make your think you’re going into labor, and sometimes even have you rushing to the hospital. Which is exactly what happened.


It’s amazing how no matter how many kids you have, you completely forget how it all goes down at the end. I suppose that memory lapse is natures way of protecting procreation. I mean, what woman in their right mind would want to go through labor ever again?


So there I was, pulling up to Mount Sinai Hospital when I caught site of a farmer’s market at the corner. Now let me explain what it’s like for a farm-fresh-veggie-loving-foodie like me to stumble upon a farmer’s market. It’s enough to stop me dead in my tracks and have me all but forget about my contractions. “I think they’re going away,” I muster to my husband as I eye the rainbow carrots in the corner crate. “Oh no you’re not!” he counters. “I promise I’ll take you to every farmer’s market in town once you have this baby!”


A couple of hours and plenty of false labor pains later, I’m back at the same corner picking farm-fresh produce.I score the most amazing purple kohlrabi, beets, carrots, baby turnips, breakfast radishes and little sugar pumpkins. The Braxton Hicks are behind me and I’m dreaming up all types of recipes as I head home on the FDR.


With farm fresh bounty in hand, this recipe practically wrote itself. I combined the kohlrabi (which is white inside, by the way), carrots and beets with some fresh beet greens to create beautiful jewel-toned latkes, that are even tastier than they are colorful. In fact, my husband brought a pan of the crispy-fried latkes to a business meeting and they were gone in seconds. He came home with rave reviews and a generous offer to take me back to the farmers market!


Other latke recipes:

pumpkin ricotta cheese latkes with cranberry maple syrup
gluten free butternut squash latkes
cheese latkes with raspberry sauce
gefilte fish latkes
snacker-crusted salmon cakes

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Pumpkin Ricotta Pancakes with Cranberry Syrup

Monday, November 4th, 2013


I bet you didn’t think it could get any better than good old pumpkin pancakes. How about pumpkin ricotta pancakes with some cranberry maple syrup to top it off? Thanksgiving heaven, wouldn’t you say? This is fair warning: you might want to get yourself some tissues. There’s going to be some drool involved.


I love pancakes. Any flavor suits my fancy. Blueberry corn and Speculoos Spiced are favorites, but gimme some cheese and I call ’em latkes. These old cheese latkes with raspberry sauce were my idea of a deconstructed donut. This year, I decided to get into the Thanksgivukkah spirit with some pumpkin flavored pancakes with a generous dose of ricotta and autumn spices. Whip ’em up on Chanukah or Thanksgiving morning – better yet – lunch, or even dinner (I am not beyond eating pancakes for dinner)…


I’m gonna go all Pioneer-Woman on you and throw in some extra photos for your drooling pleasure. I don’t know what was better, getting to eat these, or photographing them. They almost look too good to eat, don’t they?


Go ahead, dig in. These babies won’t last long…


Now open up WIDE, there’s a mouthful of flavor on that fork…


Be generous. Slather on that buttery goodness…

Nothing goes together quite like pumpkin and cranberries – two fall favorites that complement each other like yin and yang. There’s also no better topping for pancakes than pure sweet maple syrup. Why not combine the  two to make cranberry maple syrup over pumpkinlicious pancakes – a perfect pairing for the autumn holidays!

Related Posts:

cheese latkes with raspberry sauce
healthy baked pumpkin oatmeal
pumpkin banana bread

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Gluten Free Butternut Squash Latkes

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

Latkes. We can’t seem to get enough of their crispy, fried goodness! I don’t know about you, but I can eat latkes all Chanukah long. As long as I switch up the flavors, I’m good. Butternut squash latkes has become a family favorite in our home. They’re light, mildly sweet, and lend themselves well to all sorts of seasonings. We like them best straight up – good old butternut squash, onion, egg and some simple salt seasoning, but feel free to spruce them up with curry, paprika, cumin, or your favorites.

Because I prefer to prepare these gluten free latkes with simple flavors, I spice up the garnishes instead. Ginger applesauce and curried sour cream are the perfect complements to the butternut squash. Top them off with some scallions for latke perfection on a plate.

What are some of your favorite latke varieties? I’d love to hear! Share them in the comments below!

1 year ago: cheese latkes with raspberry sauce
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Chocolate Olive Oil Crinkle Gelt Cookies

Sunday, December 2nd, 2012

I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited about a post before. I mean, have you seen these cookies? If you think they look gorgeous in the picture, JUST. WAIT. TILL. YOU. MAKE. THEM.

My excitement over baked goods needs some explaining, I know. You see, as I’ve mentioned many times on my blog, I’m not the biggest baker. But I had this epiphany one night. I was thinking about crinkle cookies, and how you get those beautiful cracks in the cookie when it bakes. Traditionally, crinkle cookies are rolled in confectionary sugar, so they result in a beautiful zebra-like design. I figured, if I spray the cookies with edible gold spray paint, they’ll kind of look like a crumpled up foil wrapper from those chocolate Chanukah gelt coins. Am I right?

I thought about this one night last week and I was so excited, I couldn’t sleep. First thing the next morning, I ran to the store to collect my ingredients. My friends over at Colavita had recently sent me a few samples of their amazing olive oil, and I knew I had to incorporate it into the recipe. After all, isn’t it the miracle of olive oil that we celebrate on Chanukah? Luckily, Colavita included their 100% GREEK olive oil, and that just put it over the top. Olive oil and chocolate make a wonderful combination, so I set out developing a recipe for fudgy and delicious crinkle cookies. A few hours and a messy kitchen later, I hit the jackpot. To intensify the chocolate flavor without having to melt down chocolate over a double-boiler (I’m always looking for the easy way out, aren’t I?), I added some coffee and used dutch process cocoa powder. The result is a chewy, intensely-flavored chocolate cookie that’s reminiscent of brownies, but oh so much prettier!

To round out my Hanukkah cookie theme, I topped the cookies off with some real chocolate gelt coins. They’ve gone a long way since the waxy variety that used to be available. Nowadays, some of the chocolate gelt is made from real Belgian dark chocolate. So tell me, does it get any better than fudgy chocolate cookies topped with real dark chocolate?

In my special kosher package from Colavita, I received 4 bottles of their amazing premium world selection first cold pressed extra virgin olive oils, including:

Colavita 100% Argentinian Fruity
Colavita 100% Greek Classic
Colavita 100% Californian Mild
Colavita Private Selection 100% Italian

To celebrate Chanukah and these delicious cookies, Colavita is giving away free olive oil samples to one of my readers!

To enter the giveaway, and to get into the Hanukkah spirit, leave a comment letting me know your favorite deep fried foods! Also, if you don’t already follow me on facebook, like the BIB page here. Winner will be chosen at random at 11:00 PM Wednesday, December 12th.

Colavita is also generously offering a 25% discount to all my readers in honor of Hanukkah. Use coupon code BIB25 at checkout. Off expires 1/31/13.


1 year ago: chanukah cookies
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