Hanukkah may be called the Festival of Lights, but for us, it’s also about an opportunity to fry our dinner:
potato latkes (topped with some chopped liver, perhaps?), donuts, and even some Yiddish schnitzel for lunch. But yes, there’s more than fried food to appreciate on this holy day, which is why we’ve also rounded up our favorite challah, kugel, and rugelach—traditional and otherwise. With our best Hanukkah recipes, we’ve got you covered for all eight days of the holiday.
Potato Jalapeño Latkes
These are classic latkes, grated potatoes bound with matzo meal and egg, but the simple addition of jalapeño adds a new kick to an old Jewish classic. Medina serves his jalapeno latkes with a tangy, cooling horseradish cream.
Get the recipe for Potato Jalapeño Latkes »
This sandwich is Mile End Deli’s Eli Sussman’s fun take on the fried chicken classic; the horseradish cream offsets the bitterness of the radicchio and the richness of the schnitzel nicely.
Get the recipe for Chicken Schnitzel Sandwich with Horseradish Cream and Radicchio »
These airy pastries have a dainty elegance due to their flakey cream cheese dough and compact crescent shape.
Brisket and Potato Kugel
Buttermilk gives these old-fashioned cake doughnuts their tangy appeal; a dusting of sugar and freshly grated nutmeg adds a spicy crunch.
Get the recipe for Nutmeg Doughnuts »
Kugel—the creamy egg noodle casserole that’s a staple of Jewish holiday cooking&dmash;gets a Midwestern topping of cornflakes in this Thanksgiving side dish.
This eggy, yeasted bread is a welcome addition to any spread. Get the recipe for
Classic sweet rugelach get a Chinese twist with a filling of chestnuts, goji berries, and Chinese five-spice powder.
Get the recipe for Chestnut and Goji Berry Rugelach »
If piping the jelly into these donuts proves challenging, use a paring knife to hollow out the side of the donut, making a cavity for the jelly.
The apricots and currants used in this dish add just the right amount of sweetness.
Get the recipe for Apricot and Currant Chicken »
A creamy mashed potato filling is coated in instant mashed potato flakes and potato starch before being pan-fried to a flawless golden crust.
Get the recipe for Modernist Latkes »
Learn how to make our classic latkes. Author Joan Nathan, from whom this recipe is adapted, likes hers with applesauce; we find them equally delectable with sour cream. Alternating between onion and potatoes when grating keeps the potatoes from darkening. Get the recipe for
Gribenes, the deeply-flavored result of cooking chicken skin and onions down in fat—a byproduct of rendering schmaltz—is perfect fodder for schmearing on this crostini from
Wise Sons Jewish delicatessen in San Francisco. Get the recipe for Shtetl Toast »
Moroccan Carrots with Aleppo Pepper and Mint
Red Roast Chicken with Lemon and Garlic
Carrots are roasted before being topped with crunchy pistachios and a sweet fig vinaigrette in a simple salad from Eli and Max Sussman’s
Classic Recipes for Modern People (Olive Press, 2015). Get the recipe for Carrot and Pistachio Salad »
Chicken soup may or may not be a cure-all for physical and psychic ills, but if you add a few matzo balls it definitely becomes a deli classic. This recipe, from Gillie Feuer of Long Island, New York, was a tightly held secret, until we pried it loose. The key? Lots of veggies, and her light and floaty dumplings: “They’re very well behaved,” she told us. “They plump up just like little dolls.” The trick? “Margarine.” But, she warned, “I’m not perfect. You can see my fingerprints on them.” It might just be the fingerprints that make them so good.
Get the recipe for Aunt Gillie’s Matzo Ball Soup »
Avocado is an unlikely but delicious pairing for smoked whitefish, and this guacamole is a smokier, creamier spin on classic whitefish salad.
Get the recipe for Whitefish Guacamole »