Smoked Salmon with Latkes and Sweet Onion
12 slices smoked salmon
2 Yukon Gold potatoes, 1 to 1.5 pounds
total weight, peeled and cut into eighths
1/3 cup finely diced sweet onion
(Vidalia, Maui, or Walla Walla)
1/2 cup creme fraiche
Minced fresh chives or salmon caviar
Peanut oil for frying
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Shred the potatoes in a food processor
fitted with the shredding disk or on the large holes of a box grater.
Put the potatoes in a sieve and rinse
lightly under cold water to rid them of some starch.
Wrap the potatoes in a clean, lint-free
dish towel and wring out as much of the moisture as possible. (Rinsing
off some of the starch keeps the raw potatoes from browning while you
cook them and makes the latkes crunchier.)
Transfer to a clean bowl and season with
salt and pepper.
Pour peanut oil to a depth of 1/8 inch in
a large saute pan, and heat over medium heat until the oil is hot but
Working in batches, form each cake by
carefully dropping a large tablespoon of the potato mixture into the
hot oil. Gently press down with the back of a spoon to form a flat
round about 1 1/2 inches in diameter and 1/4 inch thick. (Pancakes should
be about silver-dollar size.)
Saute, turning as needed, until golden
brown on both sides, 4 to 5 minutes total.
Using a slotted utensil, transfer to a
paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain briefly. You should have 12
latkes total (2 per person).
Making the sweet onion cream
In a small saute pan, melt the butter
over very low heat.
Add the onion and cook under low heat
until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes.
Drain the onion in a sieve placed over a
bowl (reserve the onion butter for another use), and let the onion cool
to room temperature.
In a small bowl, combine the cooled onion
with the creme fraiche. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
Using the salmon slices, wrap it salmon
in round and place one on each latke.
Garnish each with a dollop of sweet onion
cream and with chives or salmon caviar, if desired.
Note: When making the cream, the creme
fraiche will liquefy if the onions are hot when they are combined with