10 Ways to Make your Chanukah More Sustainable

Here are the Top 10 quick and useful suggestions from Hazon, to make your Chanukah more healthy and sustainable. To find out more information and suggestions from Hazon for Chanukah, visit the Hazon Chanukah Resource Page.

1 – Chanukah Recipes

Basic Latkes

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

  • 6 russet or 8 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled
  • 1 large yellow or sweet white onion peeled
  • 3 tablespoons flour or more
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • Vegetable oil

Grate potatoes and onions. Mix them together. The mixture will release liquid. Dispose of as much of it as possible. (I suggest using a colander and a couple of clean dishtowels, or cheesecloth.)

Mix the eggs in a bowl with the salt and pepper.

Combine the potatoes, eggs and flour. If the mixture is still liquidy, do your best to drain it and add more flour.

Form the latkes into thick patties between your hands and squeeze any extra liquid out. This is important — the quality of latkes is entirely dependent upon technique.

Place into a pan with approximately with ¼ inch of vegetable or safflower oil and fry on high heat. Do not press the latkes down once they are in the pan. Simply flip when the bottom is golden brown. When done, place them on paper towels to drain.

Read more: http://blogs.forward.com/the-jew-and-the-carrot/135750/reinventing-classics-latkes-benedict/#ixzz1yS91kvJd

Sweet Potato Kale Latke

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

  • 4 cups shredded or grated sweet potato, squeezed completely dry in a dish towel
  • 1/2 cup shredded or grated yellow onion, squeezed completely dry in a dish towe
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups potato starch
  • 1 cup finely chopped kale
  • 1 1/4 tablespoon curry powder (recipe follows)

When you finish squeezing the sweet potatoes and onions, throw them into a large mixing bowl and fluff them with your hands and spread them out. Sprinkle the potato starch, curry, and kale evenly over all of the potato mixture and gently fold together. The idea here is to get each little thread coated in the potato starch, if you need to use more, use more. Add the egg and mix well.

Heat a non-stick pan with your frying fat of choice (We use a 50/50 blend of chicken fat and clarified butter, but kosher options work as well), enough to coat the entire surface of the pan. Form your latkes, season both sides with salt, and fry to a crispy and beautiful golden brown.

For the curry powder:

  • 4 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 5 star anise pods
  • 1 tablespoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice
  • 4 tablespoons ground turmeric

Toast all the spices in a dry pan over medium heat for about a minute, then grind together in a spice grinder.

Read more: http://blogs.forward.com/the-jew-and-the-carrot/148287/fry-em-up-can-the-latke-go-gourmet/#ixzz1yS3PNhEb 

Potato Latkes with Bluefish, Goat Yogurt, and Dill

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

For the Bluefish

  • 2 pounds skin-on Bluefish Boneless Filet
  • 3 Red Onions (sliced thin)
  • 1 bunch dill (rough chopped)
  • 1 bunch parsley (rough chopped)
  • 5 crushed bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup brined green peppercorns (rinsed and crushed)
  • 1 bunch thyme (rough chopped)

Place the bluefish, skin side down on top of the curing mix. Now scatter the second half of the mix on top of the bluefish. Keep refrigerated for 24 hours

Rinse the cure off the fish. Refrigerate uncovered for another 24 hours to dry the fish.

Smoke the bluefish with the apple wood chips for 2 hours at 150 degrees.

The fish should have a pleasing firmness and amber color. If it doesn’t keep smoking ‘till it does.

Refrigerate the fish immediately. After an hour coat the fish with canola oil and wrap in plastic film until ready to serve.

For the Latkes

  • 1 Small Yellow Onion (finely minced)
  • 1 ounce Duck or Chicken Fat
  • 3 Russet Potatoes (peeled)
  • 1 Egg beaten
  • 1 heaping tablespoon Potato Starch
  • Salt and White Pepper to taste
  • 8 ounces Canola Oil

Making the Latkes

On low heat, gently sauté the onion in the duck fat until the onions are translucent. Then set aside to cool. Don’t drain the fat! Meanwhile, shred the potatoes either by hand or mechanically (depending on the look you want to achieve).

In a kitchen towel or apron, thoroughly squeeze out the potatoes until they yield no water. In a mixing bowl combine the onions, potatoes, starch, eggs, salt and pepper with your hands. After all the ingredients are well incorporated, fluff up the mixture with your hands.

Heat a heavy bottomed non-reactive skillet. Add the canola oil, when it starts to shimmer, add piles of the latke mixture to the pan. When they begin to brown, flip with a spatula and gently press them down. When the other side is ready, drain them on a cookie sheet outfitted with a multiple layers of paper towels.

For the Dill Yogurt

  • 1 cup Fage Brand full fat yogurt
  • 1 cup Goat Yogurt (I use Lynnhaven — at Union Square on Wednesdays and Saturdays
  • Pinch sugar
  • Salt and white pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped dill
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 oz. Tepid water

In a bowl, mix all ingredients


On 8 warm plates lay 2 pancakes on each plate.

On top of the pancakes place a few chunks of bluefish. Make sure to discard the bloodline, it can be overly fishy.

Drizzle the yogurt sauce around the plate and on the bluefish.

Garnish with some dressed frisee, microgreens, or chives.

Read more: http://blogs.forward.com/the-jew-and-the-carrot/148287/fry-em-up-can-the-latke-go-gourmet/#ixzz1yS57fX8k 

Have a Latke Bar

Recipe originally from The Jew and the Carrot

For Latkes

  • 3 cups peeled and grated Russet potatoes
  • 1 large Spanish onion-peeled and grated
  • 2 egg whites-lightly beaten
  • All-purpose flour about ¼-1/2 cup
  • Salt and pepper
  • Neutral oil for frying-about 3-4 cups (prefer canola or peanut oil)

Place the shredded potatoes in a bowl of ice cold water *(this helps keep them from turning rust colored). Let the potatoes sit for about 15 minutes.

Place a large skillet or sauté pan over medium high heat. Fill the pan with oil to a depth of about 2 inches.

Remove the potatoes from the water. Squeeze as much water as possible by wrapping the potatoes in a towel. There will about a white starchy paste at the bottom of the bowl. Scoop some of the potato starch and add it to the potatoes in a large bowl. Add the onion and eggs. Add enough matzo flour to bind the mixture but not make it too firm. Season with salt and pepper

When the oil has reached 350 degrees, scoop the latke mixture with an ice cream scoop or large spoons and gently drop into the oil. Fry until golden brown and turn to fry the other side. remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.

The latkes can be made several hours before serving and can be reheated in a 400 degree oven on a sheet pan until crispy. Serve with applesauce or the following recipes.

Cured Salmon Remoulade

  • 2 oz cured or lightly smoked Wild salmon slices-diced small
  • 2 T. capers
  • ¼ cup chopped red onion
  • 2 T. prepared horseradish
  • 1 T. fresh lemon juice3 T. flat leaf parsley-chopped
  • ¾ cup mayonnaise dash of hot sauce (optional)

Mix all of the above ingredients in a small bowl. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Store covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days.


  • ½ cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 T. capers
  • 1 clove garlic-chopped
  • 2 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 T. Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 2 anchovy filets (optional)
  • Salt and Pepper

Place all of the above ingredients in a food processor and pulse until the mixture is combined but still chunky. Adjust seasoning.


This delicious Middle Eastern condiment makes a great dip, crust for fish or poultry and perfect topper for the latkes

  • 2 red peppers-roasted1 cup walnuts-toasted
  • 2 T. tomato paste
  • ¼ cup pomegranate molasses
  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs-left over challah is perfect
  • 1/3 cup Extra Virgin olive oil
  • ¼ t. chili flakes
  • 1 t. ground allspice
  • ½ t. ground cumin seed
  • Salt and pepper

Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until the mixture is fairly smooth. You may need to add more Extra Virgin olive oil to adjust the consistency.

Place in a container and cover the surface of the muhummarah with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out. The muhummarah can be kept covered for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Apple-raisin Chutney

  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup sugar 1 cup brown sugar1 1/2 pounds tart green apples (such as Granny Smith), peeled, cored, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 5 large garlic cloves
  • 1 2-ounce piece fresh ginger, peeled, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups (packed) golden raisins
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard seeds

Place all of the ingredients in a large saucepan and cook over medium heat until the apples are tender and the liquid has evaporated – about 45 minutes.

2 – Change Up Your Latke

Toppings: Rather than buying a traditional brand of sour cream, stock up on an all-natural or organic sourcream. More of an applesauce fan? Make your own from apples purchased locally or buy an organic brand. Latke: You can use sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes, or carrots as an added healthy bonus to give your latkes a different taste! Learn about more changes on the traditional latke from the Jew & the Carrot!

3 – Buy Organic Oil

Since Chanukah frequently involves oil in some form for every meal, buying organic oil ensures a more sustainable celebration. We recommend Negev Nectars, which makes sustainable olive oil in the south of Israel.

4 – Use Local Potatoes and Onions

Potatoes and other root vegetables are in abundance during the winter. Stop by your local farmers market and stock up prior to making your Chanukah latkes.

5 – Buy Fair Trade Chocolate

If you still want chocolate gelt, opt for Fair Trade choices. We recommend: ChocoloveDagobaEqual Exchange, and Sunspire. Try making your own gelt using this great Jew & the Carrot recipe!

6 – Make Your Own Gifts

Take a photo and create your own frame, knit a scarf or a hat, or make your own beeswax candles. Also, bake a special Chanukah dessert to give to friends and family as a more environmentally friendly gift.

7 – Give Money for a Great Cause

Instead of giving chocolate Chanukah gelt, give money to your local emergency food provider or hunger relief organization.You can support Hazon and help build a healthier and more sustainable community, by a general Hazon Donation, or you can contribute to the participants of Hazon Rides. For help finding a local emergency food provider near you, check out Ample Harvest. Another great resource for donating money as a gift is Heifer International, in support of hunger outreach programs.

8 – Participate in 8 Days of Action

After lighting your menorah each evening, dedicate yourself to being more environmentally sustainable and enacting food justice when possible. Volunteer at your local emergency food provider one night, cook a meal for someone recovering from surgery the next night, and screen a movie relating to food justice another night.

9 – Reuse the Wrap

Reusable gift bags are a great way to be environmentally conscious as well as a great supplementary gift, a beatiful gift bag that the next individual can reuse! Check out Etsy for some awesome Chanukah themed reusable gift bags and wrap!

10 – Green Your Chanukah Decorations

Try crafting a dreidel out of recyclable materials. Also, as a family or community activity, make your own hannukiah using recycled materials you find around your house. Remember making an alphabet block hannukiah as a child? Recreate the experience with your family or community, and see how creative you can make your hannukiah! Here are some great suggestions from the Huffington Post about how to green your very own hannukiah!

For more Chanukah recipes, activities, ideas, and suggestions, visit the Hazon Chanukah Resource Page.



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