by Yael van der Wouden
Recipe by: ShiraShiraShirara
- Potatoes (1kg)
- Onions (5)
- Eggs (3)
- Salt & pepper
- Roughly grate the potatoes. You can also do this with a blitzer, but there’s something nice about knowing you’re participating in your culture’s tradition by doing it by hand. Also, good moment to get your loved ones involved! Like William, your boyfriend, who says he wants to help grating potatoes but also really wants to finish building a house on Sims. Are you fucking kidding me Will, you might say, to which he might say dude I’m recreating our house look I got the kitchen spot on, to which you might say, the fuck you know what the kitchen looks like if you’re never there to help out? Anyway. Make sure to dry the grated potatoes on a paper towel, or even dust them with flour.
- Cut the onions in half moons and caramelize them. Definitely downplay the fact that Will cut himself while grating, like it’s suddenly your turn to feel guilty. He’s a grownass man, you might say. I shouldn’t have to look after him every second of the day, you might say. Or make his decisions for him, even, you might say. Unless it comes down to his parents, of course, because then you’re never allowed to weigh in.
- What does that even mean, he might say, and his finger might be bleeding profusely through the kitchen towel you wrapped around it. Beat the eggs well, until yellow and creamy. Answer: what that means is that we always bend ourselves backwards to please your parents and like, I don’t even think you know my mom’s name? Like, when’s the last time you asked about her? When’s the last time we went there for Hannukah? Mix the potatoes with the onions, then add the eggs. Thicken with flour if necessary.
- Fry spoonfulls of the latke mix in a shallow layer of vegetable oil. Give each side around a minute, or until the potatoes turn a golden brown. Then drive William to the emergency room because the bleeding is kind of excessive and he might need stitches. I’m just really close to my parents, he might say, and he might be tearing up because of the pain and the drama. Well so am I! you might cry back, underlining your words on the steering wheel. But you wouldn’t know, would you!
- Drain the oil on paper towels. The latkes keep for several days, or up to several weeks in the freezer. Incidentally, also the amount of time it will take Will to move out. His parents might come to help him with the packing, and you might hide in the bathroom. Might sit in the empty bathtub for about an hour, staring at your mother’s contact name on your phone.
Yael van der Wouden is a mixed-bag-diaspora child situated in Utrecht, the Netherlands. Her words can be found all over the place, including The Sun Magazine, Ellipsis Magazine, and (soon) Split Lip Magazine. She welcomes everyone to try out this latke recipe, it's her own, though dissuades any Wills from bleeding into the batter. More at yaelvanderwouden.com, or on twitter @yaelwouden