If Wishes Were Like Shlishkes

Certain staples of Jewish cuisine are beloved as nonpartisan delicacies, as they should be. Steaming bowls of matzo ball soup soothe the soul, crisp latkes satisfy cravings for all things fried, and bagels are the grab-and-go breakfast for countless generations. Food doesn’t care what you do or don’t believe.

Shlishkes, however, haven’t made the same leap into mainstream culture. Originating with Hungarian Ashkenazi Jews, these humble potato dumplings are often compared to Italian gnocchi for their similar structure. Tender, soft, gently simmered morsels made from a bare minimum of ingredients, they’re within easy reach of anyone on a budget or with limited cooking experience.

Potato Shlishkes

How do you make shlishkes?

It’s quite simple:

  1. Boil and mash potatoes.
  2. Add flour.
  3. Cut into dumplings.
  4. Boil and drain.
  5. Toss with breadcrumbs and bake until toasted.

This final step is what truly separates it from the other potato-based pastas. Liberal use of vegan butter or schmaltz and breadcrumbs transforms homely dough into nutty, crunchy, rich, and savory delights.

Want to make these shlishkes your own?

Such a simple formula is ripe for creative interpretation. A few easy ideas for a tasty twist on tradition include:

  • Use coarse almond meal or crushed crunchy chickpeas instead of breadcrumbs for a gluten-free option.
  • Swap white potatoes for orange or purple sweet potatoes.
  • Add cayenne or crushed red pepper flakes to spice things up.
  • Use olive oil instead of vegan butter or schmaltz to decrease the saturated fat.
  • Finish with a sprinkle of vegan Parmesan cheese.

Like any good starchy side, shlishkes are best accompanied by a hearty entree. In truth, though, there’s no bad pairing or inopportune time to serve them. Enjoy shlishke for Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, birthdays, Bachelor parties, Satanic rites; anything worth celebrating with a comforting, homemade meal!

Yield: Makes 4 - 8 servings

Shlishkes

Potato Shlishkes

Shlishkes are buttery, tender potato dumplings that are coated in crispy toasted bread crumbs. They're almost as much fun to say as they are to eat!

Ingredients

  • 2 Pounds (About 4 Medium) Russet Potatoes, Peeled and Diced
  • 1/4 Cup Aquafaba
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 Cup Vegan Butter or Schmaltz, Melted
  • 1 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the potatoes in a medium saucepan and add water to cover. Set over medium heat and bring to a boil. Cook for 12 - 15 minutes, until fork tender. Drain thoroughly.
  3. Press the potatoes through a ricer or mash very well, until completely smooth.
  4. Add the aquafaba, salt, and flour, stirring as little as possible to form a soft dough.
  5. Pinch off walnut-sized pieces of dough, about 3/4-inch each, and lightly roll them into rough balls.
  6. Set a large stockpot full of water over high heat. Once simmering, add a handful of dumplings at a time. Cook for 3 - 4 minutes, until they begin to float. Transfer to a bowl of melted vegan butter or schmaltz and repeat.
  7. After coating the simmered shlishkes with butter or shmaltz, toss with bread crumbs, nutritional yeast, and black pepper. Spread them out in a single layer on a sheet pan.
  8. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes, until lightly toasted and golden brown. Enjoy right away, while still hot.

Notes

If there are leftovers, fully cooked shlishkes can be reheated in 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 288Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 370mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 3gSugar: 1gProtein: 6g

All nutritional information presented within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on BitterSweetBlog.com should only be used as a general guideline. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that the information will be completely accurate. Even though I try to provide accurate nutritional information to the best of my ability, these figures should still be considered estimations.

3 thoughts on “If Wishes Were Like Shlishkes

  1. Fascinating! I’ve never heard of them, and I’m part Ashkenazi! I’m really not familiar with that cuisine – lots of carbs, obviously. But you can’t go wrong with baked gnocchi!

  2. Never heard of them but they sound pretty darn good. No Satanic rites/rituals in my future but I’m sure I can come up with a good excuse to try these when I have a minute or two. Panko is the best!! I get whole wheat ones from Trader Joe’s. :-)

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