|Oh? Were you expecting chocolate?|
It’s traditional. The traditional Hanukkah dish for Ashkenazi Jews is latkes. I love latkes, all crunchy and wonderful. I have heard that Israeli tradition is jelly doughnuts, sufganiyot, which are deep fried and then filled. It’s not the same. You can fry carrots. Seriously. Then you have the traditional dish of Italian Jews, carote alla giudia, which I make year round. I only have latkes at Hanukkah: they’re a lot of work and they’re oily. But braised carrots are easy and not that bad for you. You use oil and it looks like coins! What could be more appropriate?
I’ve made this for years, and honestly it works better as a series of ideas, instead of hard-and-fast measurement. It scales pretty well, if you pan is big enough. I use a big skillet and cook about six carrots at the same time, that’s probably about a pound or a pound-and-a-half.
|Sliced carrots! (You've seen these.)|
Soak about quarter cup of raisins in about a half cup of white wine. (The source from which I am adapting this, Cuicina Ebraica, by Joyce Goldstein, recommends sweet white wine, but a light, dry, non-oaky one works fine).
Heat up a large saucepan, and add some olive oil. Cook the carrots in the olive oil. They should not only cook, but dry and brown a little. Give them a little color. (The last time I did this recipe, I was in a bit of a hurry, and didn’t color them as much as I would like to; they were still good.) Add additional salt if needed, and add pepper.
|Sauté then braise|
I find that I can use far less oil that Goldstein recommends, and by using olive oil (this is made traditionally with rendered goose fat, which my market never seems to have), it's not an unhealthy dish. It's even vegan!
That’s how you get wonderful golden coins—Hanukkah gelt— on your dinner plate.
1 to 1½ pounds carrots, peeled and thinly sliced.
¼ cup raisins (golden is preferred)
½ cup white wine
3 tablespoon pine nuts
Olive oil for the pan
Salt and pepper to taste.
Sauté the carrots. Add the pine nuts. Add the raisins and wine. Cover and simmer. Reduce the liquid if necessary.
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