Ours wasn’t much of a potato household. We were – are – Ottoman Sephardim, into lots of rice and a little bit of pasta, and potatoes were a New World discovery that took hold more in northern Europe than in the northern Mediterranean. As far as we were concerned, potatoes were mostly good for filling ojaldres and not much else. My mother’s potato repertoire was limited to baked, mashed, or the very rare purchase of demon frozen French fries, which she insisted on baking because it was ‘healthier.’ Although why she would then fry up a huge platter of breaded fish and think nothing of it is beyond me.
As a potato-challenged people, our forays into latke territory (our Ashkenazi-centric religious school made me feel I wasn’t Jewish if I didn’t eat latkes) were always tentative Continue reading