And what better to say Happy Hanukkah than to make some Potato Latkes! A pretty basic recipe: Shredded potatoes and onion, Matzo Meal, eggs and salt and pepper and vegetable oil (Crisco). Just remember to squeeze the water from the potatoes. Add all in a large bowl and mix by hand. Make patties and fry in hot oil until golden brown. Serve with applesauce and sour cream. You can add anything to the basic mix: shredded zucchini, shredded sweet potato or shredded apple. Use your imagination. Instead of sour cream, try a little Mascarpone. I even used a Berry/Apple Sauce – see below. Try them for breakfast with a poached egg on top.
So now the question: What is Hanukkah? This from Wikipedia,
Hanukkah (/ˈhɑːnəkə/ hah-nə-kə; Hebrew: חֲנֻכָּה, Tiberian: Ḥănukkāh, usually spelled חנוכה, pronounced [χanuˈka] in Modern Hebrew; a transliteration also romanized as Chanukah or Chanukkah), also known as the Festival of Lights, Feast of Dedication, is an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple (the Second Temple) in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire of the 2nd century BCE. Hanukkah is observed for eight nights and days, starting on the 25th day of Kislev according to the Hebrew calendar, which may occur at any time from late November to late December in the Gregorian calendar.
The festival is observed by the kindling of the lights of a unique candelabrum, the nine-branched menorah or hanukiah, one additional light on each night of the holiday, progressing to eight on the final night. The typical menorah consists of eight branches with an additional visually distinct branch. The extra light is called a shamash (Hebrew: שמש, “attendant”) and is given a distinct location, usually above or below the rest. The purpose of the shamash is to have a light available for practical use, as using the Hanukkah lights themselves for purposes other than publicizing and meditating upon Hanukkah is forbidden.
Other Hanukkah festivities include playing dreidel and eating oil based foods such as doughnuts and latkes.
Hanukkah became more widely celebrated beginning from the 1970s, when Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson called for public awareness of the festival and encouraged the lighting of public menorahs.