Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights, is eight crazy nights of holiday fun. That also means eight crazy holiday breakfasts and brunches. What better way to celebrate than latke waffles? Oh yeah, I went there, and the result is glorious.
Combining the flavor of a potato pancake with the ease of a waffle iron, these tasty waffle-fritter hybrids are totally addictive. Using a waffle iron results in lighter latkes; you only need a little spray oil for these bad boys, no deep frying required. Latkes, or deep fried potato pancakes, are traditionally made to celebrate the miracle of the Hanukkah oil— deep frying is a natural part of the holiday. But there is no rule that says we need to deep fry, and those who are watching their waistlines might welcome a lighter option.
In this recipe, a thin layer of nonstick spray oil will “fry” these potato shred waffles to perfection. All the flavor, less greasy mess and less cleanup. No hot splatters or heavy tummies from all of that excess oil. Latke waffles are my new favorite holiday food!
I’ve made plenty of latkes over the years. Sweet, savory, gluten free, cheesy, traditional and the unexpected… you name it, I’ve tried it. It was only a matter of time before I asked myself a very important question… “Will it waffle?” Boy, will it!
Using my basic classic latke recipe as a base, I experimented until I came up with a technique that produces amazing potato waffles every time. Bonus– they’re gluten free! The best part is how versatile they are. Serve them on their own, with traditional toppings like applesauce and sour cream, or as the perfect brunchy base for poached eggs or my famous scrambled eggs. Use your creativity… breakfast sandwiches, waffle eggs benedict… the sky’s the limit!
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- 2 1/2 pounds russet potatoes
- 1 whole large onion
- 4 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Nonstick cooking oil spray
- Cut the potatoes into large chunks and shred using a hand grater or food processor shredding attachment with large holes (large shreds). I really recommend using the food processor, it saves a ton of time and will help you avoid onion tears when grating the onion.
- Place grated potato into a bowl and immediately cover with cold water. Let soak for a few minutes.
- Meanwhile, grate the onion using the grater or food processor attachment with fine holes (small shreds).
- Drain the potato shreds in a colander. Rinse and dry the bowl used to soak the shreds and set aside.
- Place drained potato shreds and grated onion in the center of a clean tea towel or multiple layers of cheesecloth.
- Wrap the shreds up in the cloth, twisting the cloth to secure the bundle, and squeeze firmly to remove excess liquid from the shreds. Pour potato and onion into the clean dry bowl.
- Preheat the waffle iron. If there are multiple heat settings available, use the medium setting. I have a four-waffle iron which make multiple waffles at once. You could also use a single or double waffle maker to make bigger waffles. I prefer smaller waffles, which have more nice crispy edges.
- While iron is heating, beat the eggs together with the salt and pepper. I usually add about 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper; use less salt if you’re salt-sensitive, you can always add more later.
- Use a fork or clean hands to mix the beaten eggs, salt and pepper into the potato and onion shreds. Take care to make sure the eggs and onion are fully mixed throughout the potato shreds.
- When iron is heated, spray generously with nonstick cooking oil spray on both sides. Scoop up 1/4 cup of the potato mixture and squeeze gently to drain off excess liquid. I use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to keep the waffles evenly sized. It may feel like you're losing too much liquid, but don't worry; if you don't squeeze them, you'll end up with waffles that are too eggy. The egg is there to bind them together, it's not the main attraction.
- Place the 1/4 cup of potato mixture onto the center of each waffle area. Alternatively, if using a single or double waffle maker, squeeze the liquid from about 3/4 cup of potato mixture, then add it to the center of the waffle iron. Spread out the latke mixture into a pancake-like circle, in a thin but solid circular layer. No need to spread it all the way to the edge, if it’s kept in the center in a more circular shape it will be easier to remove after cooking. Close the iron and let the waffles cook for 6-10 minutes, or until fully cooked and browned. One side will likely be more browned than the other.
- Carefully remove the waffles from the iron. If you’re making multiple batches, continue cooking while keeping the finished waffles on a cookie sheet in a 200 degree F oven.
- If waffles are not crispy enough for your liking, you can place them under a broiler for a minute or two to crisp them up. Careful, don’t let them burn!
- Serve hot. These can be enjoyed like latkes, or like savory waffles.