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Potato Pancakes, Latkes, Draniki

This is another dish from Eastern Europe that has a popular following in the rest of the world. The following recipe is probably more complicated than some other ones found on the web, in essence draniki are very simple. However, the additional ingredients definitely improve the texture and the end flavor.

This will feed about 4-5 people, adjust as necessary.


  • 10 medium potatoes
  • 1 medium/large onion
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbs white flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 0.25 cups kefir/sour milk/butter milk
  • 0.5 tsp baking soda

Wash and peel the potatoes


Grate all the potatoes into a large dish. It’s ok if it starts to oxidize and turn gray, watch your knuckles.



Grate the onion into the same dish


Add the egg, flour, and salt. Pour the kefir into a cup and add the baking soda, stirring vigorously. Let the mixture foam up and add it to the dish. The kefir+baking soda make the draniki fluffier and add additional flavor. Buttermilk is the American equivalent of kefir, we used a polish brand of “sour milk” when making this batch.



Alternatively, you can use a blender. Pour in the egg first, add small pieces of potato and onion. Top with the kefir+baking soda and salt. Mix the flour in afterwards.

Stir the ingredients until uniform. The mix has to be nice and thin so it can be poured.


Heat a thin layer of vegetable oil in a pan on medium heat. Pour or spoon the mixture into the pan.


Maintain the thin layer of oil, don’t deep fry the draniki nor burn them. Once the edges star to brown, it’s time to flip.



Serve hot with sour cream (apple sauce if you’re Polish).




  1. […] are variations in other countries. It is a meat based stew/soup served with special thin, large, draniki (latkes). The preparation takes many steps and can involve multiple people working side by side, in fact […]

  2. […] and might not be very well known other places. It is very simple is basically a combination of the Draniki recipe and the Kotleti recipe. All that you really have to know is how to make the stuffed […]

  3. KT says:

    Hi, I really want to try the potato cakes they look lovely, please can you tell me, what is the English equiv’ of American
    buttermilk because I cant find that in england.
    In England I cant find either; Kefir, sour milk or buttermilk in my supermarket.
    What should I look for?

    Many thanks in advance for your help.


  4. sputniktomorrow says:

    If you can’t find buttermilk or kefir in your local store, a quick web search suggests using 1 tablespoon of either lemon OR vinegar to a cup of milk as a substitute.

    Good luck.

  5. Meghan says:

    My mom used to do a variation of this. It was much less fancy, but was still amazing. She called them potato pancakes. She would use left over mashed potatoes add milk, flour, and an egg. She would then season them if she thought it was bland. Then she fried them. Thanks for sharing.

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