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My parents are from Brooklyn NY (coming from an Aussie this might sound strange) but my parents migrated to Melbourne in the early 1960's. From the age of 7 onwards every summer vacation we would visit the family in Brooklyn NY. The things I looked forward to most on our visits was of course the original Nathan's and on Brighton Beach Avenue there was Mrs. Stahl for Potatonik. Halfway between a kugel and a lava hot greasy potato brick which was so wonderful on cold winter days. I assure you, this concoction is heaven! The original recipe was posted in the NY Times food section.
- 2 1⁄2 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 packet)
- 1⁄4 cup warm water
- 1⁄4 teaspoon sugar
- 6 large potatoes, peeled (idaho's or russets work best)
- 1 large onion
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (make sure it is fresh)
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper (or more to taste, fresh-ground is best)
- 2 1⁄2 cups flour (all-purpose)
- additional oil (make sure it is fresh)
- Dissolve yeast, water and sugar in a small bowl. Let rest 10 minutes (until foamy).
- Grate potatoes and onion by hand or in a food processor.
- In a large bowl, blend eggs, 2 tablespoons of oil, salt and pepper. Stir in the grated potato and onion mixture. Add flour and dissolved yeast, mix well (mixture will be thick). Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in a draft-free area for about 1 hour.
- Pour oil into a 9” x 12” pan about 1/4" deep. Pour in the batter (the oil will come up and over the batter - This is good). Let the batter rest for about 20 minutes. Then preheat your oven to 375°F.
- Bake potatonik on middle rack for 45 minutes. Brush or dip a paper towel into some more oil and brush/pat the top of the potatonik with the oil and bake another 10 to 15 minutes, until golden brown and crusty. Serve hot.
- Note: potatonik can be refrigerated for several days or frozen for 1-2 weeks. Reheat at 325° until warm, or develops a hard crust.