I love Potatoes. I can’t get enough of them. Does a dish have Potatoes? I want it. Now. Fried, baked, boiled, mashed, smashed? Yes, please!
I suppose I’m more of a Carb-aholic. Bread? Potatoes? Pasta? Rice? Yes, yes, and YES! This delight in all things carb serves me well here in Uganda, where the centerpiece of each meal is a carb. Posho? check. Matooke? check. Rice? check!
I was at the market the other day and got suckered by the cutest little woman into buying chose to buy a million Irish potatoes. I realized my mistake about half way back to my house from the market. With my arms aching from the weight of an entire field of Irish potatoes shoved into the smallest bag she could bear to part with, I somehow managed to avoid every pothole in the “street” and found myself at home with way too many potatoes.*
After searching on the internet for various potato recipes (like gnocchi), I stumbled upon Smitten Kitchen’s Potato Latkes and smacked myself. I’ve always loved latkes, why didn’t it come to me that the thing to make at that very moment was something I love? And I do love it. And you should too. (Especially with a delicious side of lemon green beans.) My only regret is that my latkes are so far from the “flying spaghetti monster” goodness that Smitten Kitchen showcases, but that’ll come with practice. Delicious, fried practice!
* I know, there is no such thing as too many potatoes, but if you’d seen the size of my house and the amount of potatoes I brought home….
Inspired by Smitten Kitchen’s recipe
1 pound baking potatoes
1 egg, beaten
8 shallots (Smitten’s recipe calls for one large onion, but I prefer the sweetness that shallots provide)
4 cloves garlic
1/4 cup flour
oil, for frying
1. Peel the potato and grate over the largest holes on a box grater.
2. Peel and mince the shallots (or onion) and the garlic, and add to the potatoes.
3. Add the egg, flour, salt, and black pepper to the poatoes. Mix well.
4. In a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil until shimmering. Place packed spoonfuls (regular spoons for eating with) of the mixture into the oil and use the back of the spoon to flatten the tops.
5. Cook the latkes over medium-high heat until the edges are golden and turn over. When both sides are golden brown, place on paper towels to drain and continue cooking until all latkes are made.
The traditional way to serve latkes are with apple sauce and sour cream. Since both are conspicuously absent here in Uganda, I substituted ketchup.
Lemon Green Beans
Juice of one lemon
Boil or steam green beans until cooked. Removed from the pan and toss with lemon juice, butter, salt and pepper. Serve hot.