Hanukkah Guilt? Try These (Somewhat) Healthful Latke Recipes

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Parsnip and kale latkes
Parsnip and kale latkesCredit: Vered Guttman

It's hard to keep a healthy diet during a holiday that celebrates oil, even if it's olive oil. Especially when irresistible potato latkes made with lots of onion and black pepper are served straight from the pan, all shiny and brown.

So what should we do? Embrace the holiday, enjoy the moment, try even more latkes and swear to start a new (carb free! Fat free!) diet right after the holidays. And if you wish, you can take comfort in the fact that these two latke recipes include lots of nutritious vegetables – even if they are still fried in oil.

Parsnip and kale latkes (Yields about 20 latkes)

Ingredients

8 cups kale

7-8 parsnips

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Olive oil for frying

Directions

Put kale and 1/2 cup water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté kale, flipping with tongs, until wilted and water has evaporated. Set aside to cool.

Peel parsnips and grate coarsely. Put in a large bowl. Add eggs, Parmesan, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Squeeze all water out of kale using you hands and add to the bowl. Mix parsnip mixture with your hands.

Layer a baking sheet with paper towels.

Pour olive oil into a 1/8- inch layer in a non-stick pan on medium-high heat. When oil is hot, reduce heat to medium, form small latkes with your hands, kneading each latke a little (this will help prevent them from falling apart), and fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes each side. Fry about 6 latkes at a time. Transfer to the baking sheet. Add more oil to the pan as needed. Serve warm or hot.

Sweet potato, carrot and sage latkesCredit: Vered Guttman

Sweet potato, carrot and sage latkes (Yields about 24 latkes)

Ingredients

2 small sweet potatoes or one large

4 carrots

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

6 sage leaves, chopped

1 teaspoon turmeric

Pinch crushed red pepper (optional)

2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Olive oil for frying

Directions

Peel and coarsely grate sweet potato and carrots. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients (except olive oil) and mix with your hands.

Layer a baking sheet with paper towels.

Pour olive oil into a 1/8- inch layer in a non-stick pan on medium-high heat. When oil is hot, reduce heat to medium, form small latkes with your hands, kneading each latke a little (this will help prevent them from falling apart), and fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes each side. Fry about 6 latkes at a time. Transfer to the baking sheet. Add more oil to the pan as needed. Serve warm or hot.

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