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Sunday, May 9, 2010

What's in the Fridge?, Spinach Potato Pancakes aka Latkes

FOOD/LIFESTYLE:


What’s in the fridge?” is a common question when you want to eat but have no real plan.  Often you open the refrigerator, and glaze over with a million miles stare at the assortment of condiments, take-out and leftover bits.  Open and slam a few cabinets. Then you decide, there is nothing to eat.  Wrong!  Put down the phone, save some money, and cook.
So Cooking Lounge is starting a new posting called...that’s right What’s in the Fridge?.
The jump-off idea is to get you thinking about what works together, how to use what you got and make the most of your food $$$.  
Note: Hope you read the previous post (Top 10 Easy Cooking Tips) and have some basics on hand.
Spinach Potato Pancakes aka Latkes
Used what was on-hand so no etched in stone way to make this.  This is a guide.  Tailor it to you.
Spinach Potato Pancakes aka Latkes are savory, filling, easy to make and keep well in the fridge.  They go from brunch to supper with simple additions.  Serving suggestions: for a variation on Eggs Florentine, top with a sunny side up or poached egg; tasty plain from stove to plate as a snack; nice with sour cream and a little smoked salmon or even salmon roe; a hearty late night meal when topped with leftover chicken in a cream sauce.
1lb (approx) thawed and drained frozen spinach.  This was the last of a large bag of spinach in the freezer.  Drained means squeeze all the water out of the spinanch.
11/2 cup mashed potatoes (a dinner leftover). Roasted potatoes will work too as long as you chop them up well.  Even instant potatoes will work if you MUST.
3 eggs
1/2 cup grated hard cheese.  Pretty much any cheese will work except maybe soft cheeses like brie.  But you can try that too if that is what is in the fridge.  Have some fun.  Experiment.
1/4 cup of flour
1/4 cup milk.  May need less or more depending on potatoes used.
sauted garlic (on low heat till soft not browned)
sauted onions
salt 
pepper
olive oil or vegetable oil
Combine potatoes, flour, chopped sauted onions, smashed sauted garlic and cheese in a large bowl.
Beat the eggs; add milk; pour into the large bowl of potatoes etc;  throw in the spinach.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Stir until all ingredients are combined into a chunky batter.
Heat a large skillet or griddle with a little oil.  Vegetable oil is fine for this.
I used an ice cream scoop to measure batter portions.  Use a spatula to flatten and flip.  Cook each side until golden brown.
Yields approximately 10 large, thick, spinach potato pancakes.
Here's a video impression of the process.

video:wbj
Enjoy!
Cooking Lounge.