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Vicki Saragousi Phillips' Keftes de Prasa Recipe

Sephardic Leek Patties for Hanukkah
Presented by Vicki Saragoussi Phillips

Ingredients (Vegetarian version):
•    6-8 leeks small/medium or 3 large leeks (about 2 lb)
•    2 scallions (green onion) (optional)
•    2-3 eggs, beaten
•    1/2 tsp salt and pepper or to taste
•    ¼ cup bread crumbs or matzah meal 
•    vegetable oil, for frying —any neutral oil works
•    lemon wedges, for serving

Meat version – add ~ 1 lb ground beef or lamb or combination
GF version – substitute crumbs or meal with GF version
Vegan version – you can try an egg replacer or 3-4 tbs red lentil or chickpea flour (add a little bit of water to moisten and bind the patty)
*you can also add one medium boiled potato, mashed and some dill if desired.

For the leeks: trim off the root bases and use the white leaf cluster (and green part if desired).
•    Halve the leeks lengthwise then thinly slice (~1/4-1/2”). If the green part is crisp and fresh, use it as well. (trim/discard the last few inches of the green part).
•    Place the chopped leeks in a sieve and wash the soil off the leeks using your hands to massage and release the soil. Allow a few minutes for the water to drain.
•    Heat up a frying/saute pan (medium/high) and drizzle about 3 tbs. of oil. Add the chopped leeks and generously stir as you saute the leeks. You can add a couple of tbs. of water to soften leeks. Stir for a few minutes and test/taste the leeks for tenderness. Be sure to allow all the water to evaporate. Additionally drain/gently press on paper towel.

To form the patties:
•    Cool and move the leeks to a large bowl. Add the eggs, bread crumbs and salt/pepper to taste, stir to combine. Start with 2 eggs, add third if necessary.
•    Pour enough oil in a wide nonstick or cast iron pan to coat and heat to medium/high temperature. Using wet hands (so nothing sticks), take about two heaped tablespoons from the mixture and form a ½” thick round patty shape (~3” diameter).
•    Lay 5-6 patties in the pan and fry 2-3 minutes on each side until crispy and golden.
•    Remove using a spatula onto paper towels. Continue forming and frying patties from the rest of the mixture. 
•    Arrange on plate and serve while hot and crisp with lemon wedges. 
•    The patties can be kept refrigerated 3-4 days or frozen for 3 months. 
•    For crispy keftes, reheat for a few minutes in toaster oven, hot pan or oven set at broil.


Wed, June 7 2023 18 Sivan 5783