Weekend Recipe: Potato Pancakes With Smoked Salmon

Wolfgang Puck makes it easy for you to make

(recipe courtesy Wolfgang Puck, "Wolfgang Puck Makes it Easy," Rutledge Hill Press, 2004)

Potato Pancakes With Smoked Sturgeon or Smoked Salmon

Yield: 4 servings, 12 to 14 latkes

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking oil, such as canola, peanut, or safflower
  • 1 pound russet baking potatoes, peeled
  • 1 small onion, peeled
  • 1 cage-free egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh dill
  • Lemon juice
  • 1/2 pound smoked sturgeon, separated into large flakes, skin and bones removed (you may substitute smoked whitefish, trout, or smoked salmon)


  1. Using the large holes of a box grater/shredder, or the grating disk on a food processor, shred the potatoes into a mixing bowl.  Grate in the onion.
  2. Line a large bowl with a clean kitchen towel.  Transfer the mixture to the towel-lined bowl, twist the towel around it and squeeze out as much liquid as you can (alternatively you can pick the mixture up by handfuls and squeeze dry).  Transfer to another bowl.  Add the egg, flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper.  Stir with a fork until well blended.
  3. Heat about 1/4 inch of oil in a large, heavy skillet or in a an electric fryer set at 350 degrees F. until it ripples and feels quite hot when you hold your hand over it.  With a metal tablespoon, carefully place a spoonful of the mixture into the hot oil.  Press down on the mixture with an offset spatula to form an evenly thick pancake about 3 inches in diameter.  Add more spoonfuls, taking care not to overcrowd the skillet.  Cook the pancakes until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side, turning them over carefully with a slotted metal spatula.  Transfer to a tray or platter lined with paper towels to drain.  Continue with the remaining mixture.  If not serving right away, allow to cool completely.  When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and heat in the oven until crisp, about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together the crème fraîche or sour cream and dill.  Season to taste with lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
  5. To serve, transfer the hot potato pancakes to a platter.  Spoon a small dollop of the crème fraîche mixture onto each pancake and top with flakes of sturgeon or smoked salmon.  Serve immediately.
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