Emily Stoffel, the blogger-cook-photographer behind The Pig & Quill, has made cameos on both Food52 and The Kitchn. Those who love lots of toppings on their latkes will delight in Stoffel’s recipe for two-potato latkes served with both smoky eggplant and sweet persimmon-apple relish options.
Photo: Emily Stoffel
Two-Potato Latkes With Smoky Eggplant Relish, Spiced Persimmon-Apple Sauce, and Sour Cream
Makes 15 latkes
My mom has always said that we, the Chinese people, have an unspoken kinship with Jewish folks—insofar as “where Jewish people have guilt, Chinese people have shame.” That, and we both love to eat. And with that, I give you: Chinese-approved Hanukkah foods. Hellooooooooooo latkes!
Now let’s talk toppings. First up is this smoky, nutty roasted eggplant dip that I’m calling a relish because it’s got a vinegary kick from pickled sweet peppers and capers and a zip of red wine vinegar. This stuff, you guys, is so complex and simultaneously stupid easy that there are almost no words—but humor me while I try.
And then there’s the perennial favorite: applesauce. This one is as simple as can be, enhanced only with the natural jamminess of slow-cooked persimmons, plenty of good, hot cinnamon and a bit of vanilla. Tip in but three cloves for added warmth and holiday spice, and you’re there. No oils, no sweeteners. And perhaps the best friend that a dollop of cool sour cream—spiked with plenty of fresh chives—could ask for.
1/2 medium onion
1 lb. russet potatoes, peeled (about 3 medium potatoes)
1 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled (about 3 medium sweet potatoes)
1/4 cup flour (gluten-free or all-purpose will both work here)
1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
Light oil for frying, such as avocado oil (about 1 cup)
Sour cream and freshly snipped chives, to taste
Smoky Sesame Eggplant Relish for serving (recipe below)
Spiced Persimmon-Apple Sauce for serving (recipe below)
Shred onion and potatoes using the grater attachment of your food processor and add to a large bowl.
Add flour, sea salt, and pepper and toss to coat. Add eggs and toss again to coat. Transfer mixture to a colander set over a bowl and allow excess liquid to drain while you preheat oven/oil.
Preheat oven to 200 F. Line a baking sheet with paper towels.
Heat about 1/4 cup of oil to 360 F in a large, heavy skillet. With a 1/4 cup measure, scoop about 4 mounds of drained mixture into hot skillet, spreading out lightly with a fork to form about a 3-inch pancake. Fry until deeply golden, about 3 mins, then flip and brown on the second side, another 2 to 3 mins. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and keep warm in oven while you fry additional pancakes, adding oil as necessary.
Serve latkes hot with sour cream, plenty of fresh snipped chives, the Smoky Sesame Eggplant Relish and Spiced Persimmon Applesauce. (Reheat any leftover latkes in a 350 F oven or toaster oven until sizzling and crisp.) Enjoy!
Smoky Sesame Eggplant Relish
Makes 2 cups of relish
1 large eggplant
5 to 6 jarred sweet-hot cherry peppers (about 1/4 cup), finely chopped
1 1/2 Tbsp. capers, rinsed and finely chopped
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. sesame oil
1/4 tsp. smoked sweet paprika
1/4 tsp. sea salt
2 Tbsp. parsley, finely chopped
Preheat oven to 450 F. Cut eggplant in half and roast, cut-side down, on a rimmed baking sheet until tender, about 25 mins. Set aside until cool enough to handle.
Scoop cooled eggplant flesh into a large mixing bowl, discarding skins. Add remaining ingredients except parsley.
For best flavor, refrigerate overnight (although if you must it’s still delicious when just prepared). Let relish come to room temperature before serving with fresh parsley stirred through. Enjoy!
Spiced Persimmon-Apple Sauce
Makes about 2 cups
1 lb. apples, peeled, cored and diced
1 lb. firm Fuyu persimmons, peeled and diced
1 1/2 tsp. good cinnamon (we love this one)
3 whole cloves
1 tsp. vanilla
Pinch sea salt
1/2 cup water
Combine all ingredients in a medium pot or Dutch oven. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to a simmer for 2 hours (for a chunkier sauce) or 3 hours (for a smoother sauce).
If desired, lightly mash any remaining chunks with a potato masher until sauce is desired consistency. Remove cloves before eating. Serve warm or cold. Enjoy!