When one thinks of Hanukkah eating, the thought usually goes to the traditional: yummy potato latkes, crisp apple fritters, cookies and sweets and the myriad varieties of Sufganiyot (doughnuts). But dishes served to celebrate the annual Jewish Festival of Lights encompass so much more.
Here are some terrific recipes we've tried and adored. These delicacies offer a miraculous way to wish your family and friends Ah Lichtige Hanukkah... a bright Hanukkah.
We could eat this all day and all year long (and, in fact, we do!): This traditional golden brown Jewish egg bread is light and fluffy, rich and beautiful, making it perfect for Hanukkah feasts. This delicious recipe comes from A Taste of Home.
Coming from the Sephardic tradition, this salad is itself a miracle—fresh, healthful and delicious. And it's quick to prepare! We discovered this kosher offering on Food.com, but it originally came from The Hadassah Jewish Holiday Cookbook - Traditional Recipes from Contemporary Kosher Kitchens.
Add some savory goodness to your holiday dinner table. This main dish—we found this recipe at the Food Network site—is slow-cooked and tender, and covered in horseradish and garlic, it brings a wonderful spice to your Hanukkah supper. The spouse still remarks on how much he enjoys this beefy offering.
If red meat is not your thing, consider this fine chicken entree,. The recipe, from AllRecipes.com, puts a Mediterranean spin on the classic Chicken Mirabella. The flavors are just unbelievably delectable, and the combination of sweet and savory makes it ideal for the Hanukkah table.
We love applesauce for the Festival of Lights, and this recipe, which nicely accompanies latkes, is a keeper. Featuring nice chewy apple chunks, this offering is not too sweet and is brimming with fresh apple flavor. The best news: This one is very simple to make.
This recipe was suggested by Parsippany's own Patsy Kreitman, a wonderful food blogger who shares her recipes and cooking exploits on FamFriendsFood. It's a surprisingly simple and fast recipe for a sinfully decadent sweet treat from Land O Lakes that she has used for her own Hanukkah celebrations. And for good reason—these bars are so good! A hint: Cut them into small pieces; they are that rich.
These warm, sweet sufganiyot are a little bits of joy for the holiday. We found the recipe a few years ago in the New York Times—it was adapted from a doughnut recipe popular at Washington, D.C.'s Equinox Restaurant —and have used it religiously for Hanukkah ever since. These treats are fun to make, especially if you allow the kids to help with the mixing and dusting. And they go well with a wide variety of all-fruit preserves.
Lots 'o Latkes
Of course, it isn't Hanukkah without fried potato pancakes, aka latkes or levivot. Sure, one can try them baked, but it isn't the same—the oil is meaningful: It represents the tiny bit of lamp oil that lasted eight days and enabled the Maccabees to score victory over their Greek-Syrian oppressors.
Your enjoyment of the starchy treat isn't limited to one type. Enjoy these variations on the holiday staple:
- Parsnip and Celery Root Latkes (from Westchester Magazine; yes, it's potato-free)
- Quinoa Latkes (from People Magazine; again, no potato)
- Latkes with Lox (from Taste of Home)
- Caribbean Boniato Latkes (from Chabad; also works with sweet potatoes)
- Cauliflower-Potato Latkes (from Chabad)
- Traditional Latkes (from About.com)
Whatever your gustatory ideas for the holiday, we hope your Festival of Lights is bright and filled with the warmth of loved ones and great food.
What are your favorite Hanukkah dishes and recipes? Share them in the comment section!