The latke who couldn't stop screaming

Lemony Snicket Latke.jpgI wanted to tell you about this very unusual book, written by the delightful Lemony Snickett.

 This is currently favourite bed time reading at our house.  It tells the story of a latke (a potato pancake orginating from eastern Europe) who tries to tell other Christmas themed objects (candy canes, Christmas lights, pine trees etc) why he's a symbol of Hannukah and what Hannukah means.  The other objects listen carefully and then in the spirit of friendship try to find common ground between Christmas and Hannukah, much to the frustration of the latke- who can't see any parallels and gets increasingly frustrated with their attempts to equate the two holidays.  I love the way he's managed to merge history and culture in a story which really appeals to children.  An added benefit is that there is a renewed interest in eating latkes in my house.  Latkes are fairly quick to make and they are entirely gluten free.  The secret is to make sure you rinse the grated potato and then dry it really well.  The oil must be very hot when they go in the pan (hence the screaming! you will have to read the story... ) and then you need minimal fussying while the latkes are in the pan.  There is always temptation to fiddle and turn the pancakes which just means you get greasy latkes.  Leave them alone!  There is a latke recipe in my book, which I will be putting up on the website soon. This recipe is adapted from my Aunt Ruthie, who is definately one of the best latke makers I've ever come across.  Traditionally these are served with sour cream and applesauce, but they are also delicious served with creme fraiche and smoked salmon.  These make a delicious addition to dare I say.....the Christmas menu.  I can hear that lake screaming his head off!

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