Norene Gilletz, OUcooking.org Columnist - The Flavor of Memory says:
This ended up turning into an article…I guess the yeast in the potatonik batter made it “grow!” Read the background and recipes in my food column.
Brian Mailman, OUcooking.org Columnist - Slow Food in the Fast Lane says:
Potatonik is like a yeast-raised potato kugel. You can find some on http://www.jewishfood-list.com, including -
POTATONIK I (P, TNT)
Source: "Kosher Cookery," by Frances R AvRutick
Serves: about 16
1 package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (110-115°F)
3 large eggs
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt, to taste
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/3 cup oil
4 pounds potatoes
1 large onion
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Oil for baking pan
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs well. Add the salt, pepper and oil and beat all together. With a hand grater or in a food processor grate the potatoes along with the onion. Sprinkle with the cream of tartar and mix. Add the grated potatoes/onion to the beaten egg mixture. Blend very well. Beat in the flour. Lastly, add the yeast. Mix vigorously to blend well. Cover the bowl and set aside in a warm draft-free place for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a 9"x13" baking pan with oil. Set the pan in the oven to heat. When hot, pour the potato mixture into the heated oil in the pan. Bake for 30 minutes then turn the heat down to 350°F. Continue baking for an additional 30 minutes, until a golden brown.
Remove from the oven, pour off an excess oil and remove the potatonik from the pan. Set on a rack to permit air to circulate around it.
(from AvRutick) "I line my baking pan with aluminum foil and then oil the foil. I find this makes it easier to remove the potatonik from the pan. Peel the foil down from the sides and bottom."
Tamar Ansh, OUcooking.org Columnist - Nutritious and Delicious says:
A potato 'nik' is just a term used for frying one huge potato latke. OR, the way I used to make potato 'kugel' on Pesach before I had an oven!
You simply put together a potato latke or kugel batter. Pour oil to cover plus a bit more into a large deep pan that is a good quality pan. Cast iron or something non-stick. Heat up the oil on a medium flame for a minute, then carefully pour in the batter. Do this carefully, so that hot oil, which burns quicker and deeper, does not splatter. Also make sure to do it on a back burner and make sure there are no kids nearby. Let it start to sizzle then turn the flame down to low medium and allow the 'nik'/ kugel/ huge latke to brown completely on one side. Now comes the fun part when you have to flip it over. I always used to slide it out onto a large plate, then carefully put the hot pan over the plate, and using two mitts, flip the kugel back into the pan, upside down. Now your browned side is facing upwards and your bottom side will have a chance to get crispy as well. You may need to drip in a bit more oil on the edges.
The first side "cooks" about 20-25 minutes, the second side you let it cook until it is browned and crispy, without burning, however long that takes. It should be about 15 minutes.
Faye Levy, OUcooking.org Columnist - Food by Faye says:
When my mother made potato latkes, occasionally she made one big latke instead of individual pancakes. Generally she made this with a fairly small amount of batter, enough for 2 to 4 people. Some people call it potatonik or potato nik but she simply referred to it as a big latke or a stovetop potato kugel.
The cooking method is similar to the technique for a French potato galette called potatoes darphin, made of matchstick potatoes pressed together to form a cake. Unlike potato latkes, the French galettes do not contain eggs.
To turn the potatonik over easily, slide it out onto a plate, then turn it onto another plate and slide back into the pan, as in making a flat omelet.
Some people make potatoniks by adding potato latke ingredients to a yeast batter and baking this potato dough in the oven; the result is a cross between a potato bread and a potato kugel.
4 large potatoes (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled
1 medium onion (about 1/2 pound)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
about 1/3 to 1/2 cup vegetable oil (for frying)
Applesauce or sour cream (for serving)
Grate potatoes and onions, using grating disc of a food processor or large holes of a grater. Transfer them to a colander. Squeeze mixture to press out as much liquid as possible. Add egg, salt, pepper, flour and baking powder.
Heat oil in a deep 10- to 12-inch skillet, preferably nonstick. Swirl pan slightly so oil coats sides as well. When oil is hot, add batter. Cook over medium to medium-high heat, shaking pan from time to time, for 10 to 15 minutes or until bottom has browned; check occasionally by lifting edge with a metal spatula.
Remove from heat. Carefully slide a wide utensil such as a pancake turner under potatonik to free it from pan. Slide it carefully onto a plate. Turn it over onto another plate, and slide it back into pan to cook and brown second side. Cook for about 10 minutes or until potatoes are cooked through and bottom of potatonik is brown. Serve hot, with applesauce or sour cream.
Makes 4 or 5 servings.