Ollie Gratter’s Chilli Cheese Latkes

Latkes are probably the closest you can get to heaven via potato. For something so simple to make, these moreish little pancakes have such an incredible texture and are super versatile. These ones are crispy, cheesy, garlicky and can be made as mild or as spicy as you like!

Done in 30 minutes

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Ingredients

Ollie Gratter is the brains behind London's newest Jew-'ish' supper club, Wilde's Deli. Ollie is all about cooking traditional Jewish recipes with a fun, contemporary twist, so he made us some unbelievable chilli cheese potato latkes – the perfect snack for Hanukkah, or whenever you want, really.

Method

Peel and grate the potatoes. Use whichever grating size you prefer. You’ll want to grate the potatoes straight into cold water so they don’t oxidise and turn grey. Peel and thinly slice your onion.

Grab a clean tea towel. Drain the water off the potatoes first, because what we’re about to do is expel as much water as we can. Gather up all the corners into the middle and twist to get as much water out as humanly possible. Pro tip: after the first squeeze, fluff the mixture up with a fork, then go for a second squeeze to really get these super dry.

Grab a mixing bowl and throw your dry potatoes and onion in. Add in 2 eggs, matzo meal or breadcrumbs (on the coarser side of fine), 50g of the cheddar, baking powder, garlic powder, chili, salt and pepper.

Now is the time to get a little messy. You want to get into the bowl with your clean hands and mix everything up really nicely. It’s important that the ingredients are all well-incorporated. If it feels a bit dry and the potatoes aren’t sticking together well enough, throw in the third egg.

Grab a heavy bottomed frying pan and set it over a medium heat on the hob with about a quarter of an inch of rapeseed or sunflower oil in.

Test that the oil is the right heat by dropping a teeny piece of the mixture into it.

Take some mixture (about a ping pong ball size), press a good pinch of cheese into the top and shape into a ball, so the cheese is in the middle. Gently press to form into a sort of UFO shape - they should be just a little larger than a watch face. Drop the flying saucer of goodness into the oil and cook for approximately 1 minute per side. Keep a flat spatula on hand to peek at the undersides every so often - they’re ready to flip or remove from the pan when the underside looks very well browned and crispy all the way into the middle - but not burning.

Set them either on the baking tray in the oven, or on some kitchen paper for a few minutes to drain any residual oil, then you are ready to serve.

What we do at Wilde’s is sprinkle a little more sea salt on top of each, then spoon on sour cream. For these, you might want to also add some chopped chives, or even a few dots of hot sauce. Caviar if you're feeling fancy. Done well, these should be crispy on the outside, with pillowy, cheesy middles.

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Spencer Lengsfield

Spencer Lengsfield

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