Tuesday, August 10, 2010

German Homestyle Potato Pancakes

I've been making my mother's potato pancakes for years. But for the interests of this blog I decided, the last time I made them, to go back to the recipe. To my surprise, the recipe I've been using (memorized after numerous uses) isn't the recipe I got from her!


So, here's what I've been doing vs what I was 'supposed' to be doing. I'll just say that both recipes make great pancakes, though my mother's come out fluffier (due to the flour). And use yellow potatoes. I kept forgetting which work best and so alternated for a while. The white turn out VERY sticky once cooked (like the packaged stuff), so make sure you use yellow (Yukon Gold work well for this).

So first, my recipe
3-4 raw, peeled potatoes (for 2 adults)
1/4 onion
1 tsp garlic
1 tsp salt (watch this, too much and it's inedible, too little and the pancakes don't taste as good - I generally make up the mix with a bit of salt and then try the first cooked pancake to see if I need to add more)
1 tbsp flour (to thicken the mix, only if necessary - this will make the pancakes fluffier)

This recipe makes a fairly thin mix, which is great if you like thinner, crispier pancakes.
1. either grate the potatoes by hand on a cheese grater or put them through an electric grinder (I throw everything into my Vita-Mix - it's a high tech blender with dull blades that crushes everything in the container. It makes a smoother mix then grinding and grating though, which some people might not like.)
2. add the other ingredients and mix well
3. pour onto a well oiled, heated frying pan
4. brown on both sides
5. serve with red current sauce, sour cream or grated cheese

Here's my mother's recipe:
5-6 potatoes (ground raw)
3 eggs
5-6 tablespoons flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup milk

1. mix ingredients
2. fry on stove in well oiled pan

One note of caution, I mix everything in my Vita-Mix, and found for my mother's recipe that the mix separated after a few minutes, so I had to stir it before pouring it onto the frying pan or I'd get one very fluffy pancake and one mostly made of liquid.

And if you have access to red currents, here's a sweet and sour sauce that goes great with potato pancakes:
1. put the currents into a pot and boil them 1-2 minutes (you may need to add a bit of water)
2. add 2 tbsp cornstarch (depending on the amount of currents used, adjust as necessary)
3. sugar to taste (2 tbsp)


So, are there any recipes you use that you found out you've been doing 'wrong' for years?

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