This year’s Hanukah arrived during the countdown to our annual Art Week. Constant Companion and I had already spent parts of two days gallery hopping. Dinner on the first night of the Festival of Lights had to be something easy after hours of looking at art, talking to people, and a little bit of bubbly. Roast chicken is usually a good choice at such times. To be paired with a recipe for “sheet pan latkes” that was in a Chabad magazine received a little while ago.
Except, the package of meat I’d stashed in the freezer a week ago was not chicken, but two kosher turkey breasts. Surprise! We had already eaten our seasonal fill of turkey what with Thanksgiving dinner and the bountiful leftovers (many now stashed in the same freezer). Constant Companion offered to pick up some fried chicken: get it, fried food for Hanukah. No need: I’d just roast the turkey in the same oven along with the so-called “sheet pan latkes.”
Before putting the meat into the oven, garlic slices were inserted into slits around the meant. Then the meat was topped with freshly squeezed lime juice (no lemon in the fridge) followed by a mixture of turmeric, paprika, fresh thyme, and fresh rosemary. I have learned that when dry ingredients follow wet they are not immediately washed into the roasting pan. Then into the 425 degree oven required for the recipe.
Sheet Pan Latkes (with some changes/additions)* or as the recipe allows, kugel. The recipe calls for potatoes grated with scallions, grated sweet potatoes (I added grated parsnips), grated Granny Smith apples with cranberries (this variation I omitted), and zucchinis grated with onion.
*This recipe is from a subscription service www.fleisigs.com if you are interested in kosher recipes. Caveat … it’s pretty spendy.
Preheat the oven at 425 degrees and pour ¾ cup of oil in a sheet pan. Start with 3 or 4 medium bowls (one for each “latke” mixture) into which you’ve cracked an egg and added a teaspoon of salt (the 4th bowl is for the apples if you use them). Next prepare each group of vegetables. I placed one large grated baking potato with about 4 chopped scallions to the first bowl with the egg. The next bowl was filled with 2 medium-sized grated sweet potatoes, three medium grated parsnips, and 1 teaspoon of za’atar with the egg. Finally, I added a large zucchini grated with half of an onion to the third bowl with the egg. Mix each bowl of ingredients, then spoon them separately and carefully lengthwise into the prepared pan. Drizzle some oil over the vegetables and bake for 40 minutes.
This was a nice meal to start Hanukah with while we took a break from art.