This week starts one of my favorite holidays, Hanukah. To me it is all about the food! Hanukkah celebrates the miracle of oil, and thus it is traditional to eat fried foods such as latkes and sufganiyot during the holiday. Latkes are pancakes made out of potatoes and onions, which are fried in oil and then served with applesauce. Sufganiyot (singular: sufganiyah) are jelly-filled donuts that are fried and sometimes dusted with confectioners’ sugar before eating.
So bring on the Latkes. There are so many versions of latkes from simple potato to parsnip, sweet potato, zucchini to French onion. There are even gluten free versions to vegan of course.
Yet, in my home we like to eat the traditional version of potato and onion latkes smeared with either applesauce or sour cream. We also love to eat brisket with our latkes. My version goes extremely well with Latkes because of the combination of dried apricots, prunes, along with aromatic spices. Typically, I cook this the day before in a crockpot. I have noticed that the aromatic ingredients tend to enhance tremendously following a cool down in the fridge, and then re-heated, results in improved flavor that is to dye for.
- 1 4 1/2- to 5-pound flat-cut beef brisket
- 2/3 cup whole dried apricots (about 4 ounces)
- 9 large garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 cups chopped onions
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 1 can cranberry sauce (berried or jelly)
- 3 cups beef stock mixed with 3 tablespoons of cornstarch.
- 2/3 cup pitted prunes
- Chopped fresh parsley
Using small sharp knife, make 1/2-inch-deep slits all over brisket. Place the brisket in the bottom of the crockpot. Place all the other ingredients on top.
Cover; roast until brisket is tender, about six hours on low. Chill uncovered until cool, then cover and keep chilled overnight. (I place the entire dish in the fridge.)
Spoon off any solid fat from top of gravy; discard fat. Reheat on high for about an hour then place on low to warm for another hour.
Although these foods are particularly significant during Hanukkah, we enjoy them year-round.