Seder Today

Sweet Potato Latke with Date Puree

Spike Mendelsohn

Right after Top Chef I participated in an event at the Synagogue at 6th & I in Washington, DC. First off 6th & I is one of the coolest synagogues with amazing programs. They invited my mother and I to be guest chef for an evening for “Latkamania”. My mother and I demonstrated all different kinds of latkas to make with toppings. You can imagine two cooks in a kitchen is way too many for my family but we had a lot of fun and my mother of course even taught me some new things. This recipe is our favorite twist on an old delicious classic. Just to switch things up a bit and show the table your chefy-ness.

Photo by Cydney Puro


  • 1 pound of sweet potatoes, peeled and coarsely grated 
  • 1 onion, peeled and coarsely grated 
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour 
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 1 tbps of Creme fresh 
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pin of cinnamon 
  • salt and pepper to taste 

Date Purée

  • 2 pounds of seeded and peeled dates. 
  • 1 quart of Manischewitz
  • peel of an orange 

Spices Crema 

  • 2 cups of Creme Fraiche 
  •  1 tsp of black pepper 
  •  1 tsp of cinnamon 


In a bowl mix everything above. Heat oil in a deep 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking.  Working in batches of 4, spoon 1/8 cup potato mixture per latke into oil and flatten to 3-inch diameter with a slotted spatula. Reduce heat to moderate and cook until golden, about 1 1/2 minutes on each side. Transfer latkes with spatula to paper towels to drain.

For Date Puree

Blanch the seeded dates and then shock in ice water bath. Discard peels. In a sauce pot add dates and enough Manischewitz to cover with the orange peel. Cook until dates out nice and tender and liquid is somewhat reduced. Add dates to a blender, sparingly adding remaining juice until puréed nice and smooth. Apple sauce consistency. Discard orange peel. 

For Spices Cream

Whisk until hard peaks form. 


Potato Latka, Spread date purée on top and garnish with Spices Crema.