I ate a full plate of scrumptious Vegan Potato Latkes last year at a family party that was catered by Feast Your Eyes. I couldn’t imagine those luscious latkes being any tastier. But, Feast Chief Culinary Officer, Lynn Buono, told me that this year’s vegan latkes were even better. She’d used a flax egg replacer gel, a recipe I’d recently shared with her. Now, lucky for us, Lynn is sharing the recipe for her Vegan Potato Latkes here. And by the way, these latkes are gluten-free too!
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Feast Your Eyes is a Philadelphia-based on and off-premise catering company focusing on authentic ingredients, top-shelf service, and event planning that’s closely partnered with their clients. Founded in 1982 by Lynn Buono and Skip Schwarzman, who are wife and husband, both their full service and Take Out Menu foods are created with an eye towards local suppliers and sustainability, as well as featuring a wonderful array of both vegan and gluten-free options. I’ve been to many events catered by Feast, both on and off-premises and can vouch for the exquisite food and service.
Soon after I moved to Philadelphia, I was introduced to Lynn via an email sent by a mutual friend. A week later, we met in person when I attended a Les Dame d’Escoffier Philadelphia. event. She has been a generous friend and a source of inspiration and information.
Chef Lynn Buono’s Vegan Potato Latkes
Yield: approximately 24 – 3” Rounds
Follow chef Lynn’s recipe, including her prepping the potatoes ahead tips. Peeling and grating the potatoes ahead makes latke making so much easier. These are divine, crispy, which I love for my once a year treat.
Chef Lynn Buono’s Notes
- Use Russet potatoes. The amount of starch in this potato makes the best latke. Lower starch potatoes have more moisture and create gummy latkes.
- Peel the potatoes and store in water overnight. This removes some of the starch on the outside of the potato, ensuring a better result.
- Remove them from the water, grate them, and put the grated potatoes in lots of ice water. Keep them in the ice water bath for at least an hour and up to a day ahead. Doing prep ahead is helpful, and also here, the ice water bath ensures the latkes will cook up crisp.
- When you are ready to fry the latkes, drain the potatoes and then press the water out. Use a large kitchen cloth set over a bowl.
- It is best to make latkes the day you plan to serve them. In a pinch, they can be pre-made the day before and re-crisped in the oven at 375º for 5 minutes.
- Make sure to use an oil with a high smoke point. My recommendations are avocado, grapeseed, peanut, or sunflower.
Fran’s Notes, Flax Egg Gel, Alternative Egg Replacers and Game plan:
- Always read a recipe all the way through before you start.
- Make the flax egg gel. The gel can be refrigerated up to 5 days and frozen for a couple of months.
- I make crackers using the strained, boiled seeds, ground flax, oat, almond and sometimes rice flour. The recipe is not yet ready to post but is based on flax crackers in both Homemade Vegan Pantry by Miyoko Schinner and Gena Hamshaw’s Food 52 Vegan .
- The flax gel egg replacer really works to replace the 2 eggs in Lynn’s traditional recipe but if you don’t want to use it, add more of the starch mixture or commercial egg replacer for the 2 eggs.
- If corn allergies are an issue, replace the cornstarch with more rice flour.
- JUST IN: Chef Lynn wrote this to me today: “For the first time I left on 1/3 of the potato skin (to increase the fiber) and guess what? It works well.” I’m going to do the same.
Flax Egg-Replacer Gel
Some cooks refer to this as flax glop. You will see why. But it works as an egg replacer here and in other applications. The gel really does look like egg whites.
- 1/2 cup flax seeds I use golden, but brown is fine
- 3 ½ cups water more as needed
- Put the flax seeds into a medium saucepan. A wide pan works best.
Pour the water over the seeds and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by 2/3 to ½.
Strain through a wire mesh strainer—not a very fine strainer, set over a bowl. If the seeds won’t easily strain, put them back into the saucepan and add more water. Simmer again.
- If you have more than ½ cup of flax egg gel, just pour it back into the saucepan until reduced.
Vegan Potato Latkes
Latkes make a great side dish or appetizer and this vegan version won't disappoint you.
- 4 Russet Potatoes 3 - 3 1/4lbs
- 1 Small Onion
- 1/3 c Rice Flour
- 1/3 c Corn Starch
- 1/3 c Potato Starch
- 1/2 c Flax Egg-Replacer Gel see recipe
- Vegetable Oil with a high smoke point
- Peel potatoes and onions and place directly into cold water.
- Grate the potatoes and onions with the largest setting on your grater or food processor. Cover the shredded mixture in ice water. Let the mixture rest in the chilled water for at least one hour or overnight.
- Drain the shredded potatoes and place them in a cotton dish towel or cheesecloth. Squeeze out excess water (it is important to get out as much of the water as possible and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- In a medium bowl, combine rice flour, corn starch, potato starch, salt and pepper. Sprinkle ¾c of the dry mixture over the potato and onions. Gently mix together.
- Add the flaxseed gel to the potato mixture and gently stir. The combined ingredients should be rather dry – if it is still too wet, add more of the starch mixture.
- Add enough vegetable oil in a sauté pan to cover ½” high. A cast-iron pan works nicely for this.
- Test the oil if it is hot enough by dropping a small piece of potato in the pan. If it sizzles immediately, is it ready (approximately 360°).
- Using a large spoon, gently slide 1/3c of the mixture into the hot oil.
- Fry until it is crispy and golden brown. Flip and repeat on the other side.
- Once ready, take latkes out of the oil and put on a piece of brown paper to absorb excess oil.
- Store on a cooling rack.
Serve hot with a side of applesauce and (vegan) sour cream, or eat them plain.