photographs by andre baranowski
Is there a culinary pairing that affords more iterations than potato and onion? If so, I’d be hard-pressed to name it. The combination can yield crispness, creaminess, and depth. Exhibit A: the potato kugel. Add some eggs, flour, and salt, and you’ve got a dish revered through the ages by Eastern European Jews. Here’s our simple recipe, just in time for the High Holiday table, though for me, any table it appears on, at any time, constitutes a holiday.
Serves 6 to 8
3 lbs russet potatoes
1 Tbsp kosher salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 medium onion
6 Tbsp vegetable oil, plus more for oiling pan
1⁄3 cup flour
¼ tsp baking powder
Preheat oven to 350°F, with a heavy 9” x 9” baking pan or 10” cast-iron skillet inside.
Peel potatoes and place in a bowl of cold water. In a large bowl, beat eggs well with salt and pepper.
In a food processor with grating plate, grate the onion. Dry potatoes and grate. Squeeze out excess liquid and quickly add potatoes and onions to eggs. Add oil, flour, and baking powder to mixture and combine well.
Remove pan from oven and slick with oil. Carefully but quickly add potato mixture, smoothing it out so it is even. Bake 2 hours, or until the kugel is creamy in the center and browned and crunchy on top.
Preventing Potatoes From Oxidizing
To keep peeled potatoes white instead of turning brown, place in a bowl of cold water, then dry before grating. If grating by hand, grate into a bowl, squeeze out excess liquid, and place in another bowl and combine with egg/oil mixture. Stir frequently to coat.