BACON & POTATO LATKES WITH FRESH FENNEL & CITRUS SLAW
Everyone should adopt a latke into their recipe rotation. (Because what’s not to love about fried potato pancakes?) The trick, whether you’re making them for Easter, brunch with friends or otherwise, is to get them super crispy. In mine I added crispy bacon inside for a little guilty pleasure, but with a healthy twist by topping them with a fresh fennel slaw mixed with citrus to brighten the color on the plate and to cut the fat of the bacon. This is a simple recipe to adapt to add your favorite things like zucchini, sweet potato, apples, carrot and or other veggies you might like more, the possibilities are endless. But I do hope you try my version out.
6stripsof bacon, cut into thin strips, sauteed until crisp (reserve fat for cooking)
1medium sweet onion, grated
2tbspfinely chopped cilantro
4tbspall purpose flour
3/4tspsalt, plus more to taste
Shaved Fennel Slaw
1small head of fennel, cut in half, thinly sliced (fronds reserved)
1tbspfinely chopped fennel fawn
2tbspextra virgin olive oil
2tspfreshly squeezed lemon juice
1tangelo, segmented; reserve the remaining citrus for the dressing
salt, to taste
Combine the grated potatoes and onions in colander, and let it drain for 30 minutes. Periodically press down with the the back of a spoon to release the juices. Squeeze the potato and onion mixture to remove any excess moisture, and then pat dry with paper towels.
Place the dry potato and onion mixture into a large bowl, add the flour and toss to combine. Next, add cilantro, salt, egg, and mix well.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons bacon fat and swirl to coat. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of potato mixture loosely into your palm, form a ball and flatten into a pancake shape. Repeat to form the rest of the latkes. Add as many that will fit comfortably in the skillet and fry them. Flipping once, until golden brown, 4 to 7 minutes per side, depending on how brown and crisp you like the outside of your latkes. Remove the latkes from the skillet and place on a plate with paper towel to drain any excess fat. Repeat with the remaining oil and potato mixture.
Shaved Fennel Slaw
Trim the tops and bottom of the fennel bulb, slice the bulb in half lengthwise. Remove the core of the fennel bulb with a sharp knife, and shave into thin slices, if you have a mandolin use that to get the best results, if not then a sharp knife will do the trick. Place the shaved fennel in a mixing bowl.
Cut the skin off the tangelo and slice the sections out. Reserve the remaining citrus for the dressing.
For the dressing, squeeze the remaining tangelo juice into a bowl, add the lemon juice. While whisking stream in olive oil and add salt to taste. Toss dressing with fennel, tangelo segments and fennel fawns to combine. Top latkes with the fennel salad or enjoy on the side.