Traditional Hanukkah Menu Staples

byJonathan Preskow, JP Fine Foods Executive Chef and CEO | publishedNovember 30th, 2022
Traditional Hanukkah Menu Staples

Hanukkah, also known as the festival of lights, or Chanukah, is an eight-day Jewish celebration. Hanukkah is celebrated nightly with the menorah lighting, special prayers, and fried foods. The history of Hanukkah is that there was only oil to light the candles for one night, however the oil lasted for 8 days. Hanukkah commemorates the miracle of the oil.

Why do people eat fried foods during Hanukkah? Since the Hanukah miracle involved oil, it is customary to eat foods fried in oil. Other traditional Hanukkah dishes are also composed of savory meats, and sweet desserts.

This year, Hanukkah starts on Sunday December 18th and ends on Monday December 26th. Below are our essential Hanukkah dishes that are rooted in tradition and sure to satisfy the entire family:

  1. Brisket: A staple dish for many Jewish holidays besides Hanukkah including Passover and Rosh Hashanah. When done right, brisket takes several hours to cook and turns out irresistibly juicy and flavorful. This kosher cut of meat is perfect for feeding the entire family, which is another reason it is such a staple dish for the holidays.
  1. Latkes: Also known as potato pancakes, latkes are made from shredded potatoes that are fried to a golden-brown colour. Though they are a traditional Hanukkah food, many people have added their unique twist to this classic recipe. Traditionally, they are served with applesauce and sour cream.
  1. Sufganiyot: These round, deep-fried yeast doughnuts are filled with jam and sprinkled with powered sugar. You can imagine them as a cross between a beignet and a jelly doughnut. They are a Hanukkah staple because they are sweet dish that is fried in oil.

Cooking with hot oils, and filling the plates of your hungry friends and family can be daunting. Contact us for a curated menu for your Hanukkah celebrations.