Grating potatoes—or anything for that matter—might be one of my least favorite kitchen tasks. I usually manage to stay pretty clear of my chef’s knife blade. But when muscling a slippery vegetable through sharp holes of death, all bets are off.
I’m pretty sure that having scabby knuckles by the end of the Hanukkah season is an important cultural part of being Jewish. It just gives the old Yentas in the kitchen another reason to make their offspring feel guilty about not having a fifth serving.
I got the idea from my friend Jodi Moreno of What’s Cooking Good Looking, who put together this amazing Farmer’s Market menu for you guys last month. I’ve made latkes from pretty much every root vegetable under the sun, and couldn’t believe that I hadn’t thought to latke-fy sprouts before. I’ve been so blind!
Not only did the concept sound like the most delicious thing imaginable, but I realized fairly quickly that the best part about this dish would be that I could either use my chef’s knife to break the sprouts down into ribbons or buy a big bag of them pre-shredded. I’m happy to report that I was a good little food blogger and didn’t succumb to the latter. (Mainly, because I couldn’t find them at Whole Foods.)
The second amazing thing about using Brussels sprouts for these gluten-free latkes is that they’re a much dryer vegetable. Squeezing all the moisture from your potatoes in a dish towel or cheese cloth is yet another annoying corner that I tend to cut when latke-making. But as any Yenta knows, the less moisture in the batter, the crispier the latkes.
Jodi mixed in some potato, but I decided to go straight sprout, which required a little more egg and flour to make the mixture batter-like. If yours seems too dry or isn’t holding together in the pan, you can always add an extra egg to help bind all those sprouts together. If you don’t have brown rice flour, you can also use AP gluten-free or chickpea flour.
Last note: probably due to their dryness, these latkes required a freakish amount of oil. I like using coconut oil for high heat frying (I like this brand), and I eat a lot of it on normal days, so I wasn’t quite as disturbed when the latkes seemed to inhale all the oil in the pan like a sponge. You’ll have to add more between batches, and potentially after you flip for the first time.
I hope that you all had an amazing Thanksgiving weekend with your families, and are fully recovered in time for next week’s Christmakkah celebrations! If you’ve shed too much blood, sweat, and knuckle shavings already, try taking a break from ye ole potato routine this year for some Brussels sprout latkes! But I promise not to make you feel guilty if you don’t.
Gluten-Free Brussels Sprout Latkes with Anchovy Aioli
- 4 cups shredded Brussels sprouts from about 1 pound
- 1 medium leek white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
- 3 extra-large eggs beaten
- 1/2 cup brown rice or chickpea flour
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Coconut oil for frying
In a large mixing bowl, combine the Brussels sprouts, leeks, eggs, flour, lemon zest and juice, and salt. Stir until the flour is fully incorporated.
Heat a thin layer of coconut oil in a large skillet over high heat. Prep a plate or baking sheet with paper towels.
Arrange a layer of Brussels sprout latkes in the hot oil, 1-tablespoon of batter per. Gently flatten the scoops with a flat metal spatula. (You just want to make sure the top is flat for when you flip.) Cook until browned and very crispy on the first side, about 1 to 2 minutes. Carefully flip and repeat on the second side, adding more oil as necessary. Remove to the paper towels to drain. Continue cooking the latkes in batches until the batter is all gone.
Meanwhile, make combine the ingredients for the aioli in a small food processor and puree until smooth. Transfer to a serving bowl.
Season the latkes with salt and a squeeze of lemon. Serve alongside the anchovy aioli, tahini yogurt, or your sauce of choice.