Growing up in a Ukrainian household, potatoes was something we ate at least four times a week if not more. My parents always had their own garden and grew their own potatoes, so of course, potatoes were a staple in our house. And one of my favorite potato dishes that I grew up eating is called Draniki or Deruny.
What is Draniki?
I grew up in the western part of Ukraine close to Poland and we use a lot of Polish vocabulary. We would call draniki, Plazki (recently I discovered that platzki is a polish word).
Draniki is a Slavic dish and depends on where you’re from, some people also call them Deruny or Latkes, and they are simply put fried potato pancakes. If you love potatoes like me, this is the ultimate comfort food, crispy golden brown bite of deliciousness, which takes me right back to my childhood.
How to make Draniki?
This is such an easy recipe and all you need are basic ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen.
- Yukon Gold Potatoes
- 1 EGG
- Salt and Pepper
- Sour Cream (for dipping)
Homegrown potatoes are the best, but of course, not many people grow their own potatoes, in that case, I prefer Yukon Gold Potatoes. The secret to these authentic Draniki is to grate your potatoes on the smallest box grater setting to almost puree texture. You could use a food processor, tastes the same but the texture is not quite the same, that is why I prefer to grate it by hand.
Be careful when grating by hand, you might want to use Glove Food for safety.
Peel the skin off your potatoes and grate potatoes in a large bowl and drain the excess potato water. You can use a cheesecloth method to drain out the water, a strainer, or spoon out the extra excess water. Then grate your onion on the same small setting and add it to your grated potatoes. Add your egg, 3 tablespoons of flour, and mayo to the potatoes batter, and season with salt and pepper.
Pan-fry the Draniki: Preheat a pan with oil ( I prefer avocado oil for its high smoke point) then take a large spoonful of the potato batter and place it on the frying pan, flattening it out with the back of your spoon into a circle shape. You can fry 4 to 5 draniki at a time depending on your pan, fry them on medium-high heat for about 3 to 4 minutes per side (depending on your cooktop) when they turn golden brown, turn them over immediately.
Place them on a paper towel to absorb excess oil and serve them immediately.
These delicious potato pancakes or potato fritters taste the best when they are fresh and served with sour cream. I like to season my sour cream with a pinch of salt, trust me it makes all the difference.
It’s always a treat when I make draniki (or platzki as we call it in our household) my kids love it, and I hope you do too. If you enjoyed this recipe, I would love it if you shared it on Facebook or Pinterest.
Ukrainian Potato Pancakes, Recipe for draniki
- 1 lb Yukon Gold Potatoes
- 1 Yellow Onion
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp mayo
- black pepper
- Wash, peel and grate potatoes on the smallest box grater setting to almost puree texture, similar to applesauce.
- Drain out the excess potato water, either by using a cheesecloth, a strainer or just spoon out the extra water. .
- Grate onion on the smallest box grater setting
- In a large bowl add egg, flour, grated onion, and mayo to grated potatoes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Preheat a frying pan with oil, and take a large spoonful of the potato batter and place it on the frying pan, flattening it out with the back of your spoon into a circle shape. Saute 4 to 5 draniki (potato pancakes) at a time on each side on medium-high heat until golden brown and turn them over immediately. Repeat the above instructions with the remaining batter. Place draniki on a paper towel to absorb excess oil and serve immediately with sour cream.