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Betty Jo's Valentines

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    These are valentines from my mother's childhood scrapbook, "Betty Jo" Halloran. They were sent and received, from her siblings, grandparents, cousins, and friends, from 1929 to 1938, in Fargo, North Dakota, and Minneapolis/St. Paul. Please enjoy them with my love. xoxo, Susie

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December 21, 2007


These sound so flipping good. A cuisinart is now one of my must haves for christmas ( or even better the after xmas sale time )
I grew up on potato pancakes and miss them terribly.

SO do you have a good chicken soup recipe? Preferably one with rice as I am not a noodle kinda gal.


Honey, lemme tell you, my grandma (ahava Sholom) (my Bubbe (also Ahava Sholom) was on my Dad's side - both my bubbe and my Grandma were Jewish but we didn't do the goyish Granny smith and Granny Jones differentiation) fell in love with electric graters quite a long time ago and her method is still the easiest adn (of course) the best. Here it is. Do the grating of the potatoes and the onion in the processor. Dump this grated stuff into a colander which is over a bowl. Sprinkle salt onto the mix to facilitate watering. Let this sit for a while (my mom mixes in some lemon juice to keep everything white rather than browning) and then use the pusher from the food processor to push out any excess water. You don't need this bone dry but dry enough. So , when you are happy (Listen, whispers my grandma, you don't have to make a business out of it) put the onion, potato, salt (and lemon juice) mix into another) bowl. Go back to the bowl that collected the juices from the potato/onion mix and gently pour off the wter on top (think HS chem lab). At the bottom will have settled out potato starch. You can add this into your working bowl and mix this in with eggs, extra seasonings (white pepper if you are a gourmet, regular pepper if it is for home. Sea Salt? Feh! Morton's kosher salt is great! My crew likes some garlic) I have seen crumbled matzah, matzah meal, and regular flour added (the later rather a homage to Annie Hall ordering white bread at a deli) but in my experience, and a relief to those of us with celiac/spru everywhere, it isn't really necessary. I spray a large pan with cooking spray and preheat the oven to about 400 degrees while i put my skillets on the fire. One is nonstick and the other is seasoned cast iron and I don't see really any difference in the outcome (that, darling, is the scientific method)i spray both of them with nonstick spray. When they get hot enough I add about 1 tablespoon of oil (olive oil to chicken schmalz depending on if we are having a milk or meat meal) and then , using a 1/4 cup measure as a scoop , put in the mix and pat them out to about 3 1/2 inches. Fry til brown on one side (depends - the first batches take more time) and then flip. When it looks done, remove each latke and put on the prepared pan in the oven. DO NOT STACK. This keeps the latkes crisp without a lot of oil and allows you to serve everyone at once. Add another tablespoon of oil for each batch made in the pan. This isn't onerous. I made this with chicken breasts (used the schmaltz from the skin for the frying fat and the dogs got the gribbenes for a chanukah treat), applesauce, and a salad in the hour between getting back from court and lighting the candles. Wow ! wonderwoman! Bows all around.

Kiru Banzai

Thank you, Susie! I love latkes beyond all reason (and beyond my complete lack of Jewish heritage). But should I peel the potatoes first?


Try 'em with the French Onion dip you make with sour cream and French Onion soup. Holy crap, it's good!


Yum.. potato pancakes.. you've given me inspiration for my 3rd honeymoon breakfast... 3rd as in.. the 3rd breakfast I'll be making for us during our honeymoon.. honeymoon meaning the month of our wedding. :) Yes, I extend all birthdays, holidays, and now anniversaries to include the whole month ;)


Dear now-Auntie Susie,
Thanks for the grate recipe! Unfortunate that I am, there is no processer in mah kitchen, so must wrestle with grater and sieve (coffee filters inside metal sieve).
I must say, the sour cream and Onion soup dip sounds awesome - thanks Andrea!
I make my own applesauce, since the commercial stuff is always too sweet for my taste.

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