Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sour Cream vs Applesauce: A Chanukah Debate

 Chanukah begins tonight! Are you ready???
Last chance for my two Chanukah giveaways today: Oh Nuts and Eight Winter Nights!

There is an eternal debate on Chanukah. I'm sure you're thinking, "candle lighting from left to right or right to left?" or "do we add a candle each night or take one away instead?" or even "how do you spell Chanukah?" but you would be wrong.

The big debate on Chanukah, perhaps the most important decision one can make in the month of Kislev, is this: Applesauce or Sour Cream?

And I'm here today to tell you why Sour Cream is the ultimate in latke topping.

Judith slaying Holofornes,
Painting by Cristoforo Allori
Maybe not the most appetizing illustration?

Let me tell you a little story about how dairy foods came to be a part of the Chanukah celebration. There once was a Jewish lass named Judith. During an Assyrian siege of her village (as part of the war that is remembered through the Chanukah celebration), she charmed her way into the enemy camp with a basket of cheese and wine. The enemy general, Holofernes, ate of the cheese and drank of the wine until he was unable to stay awake. The sweet lass Judith then took his sword and beheaded the muddled man. She brought his head back to her people in a basket and saved her town.

In her honor, then, dairy foods are consumed. What better choice than to top latkes, the perfect Chanukah treat, with sour cream, the perfect Chanukah remembrance?

Now, aside from the ritual value of the sour cream and the story that it allows us to tell at our dinner tables, there is also the added benefit of calcium (about 2 percent of your recommended daily allowance) and protein (about 1 gram per 2 tablespoon serving). These nutrients enable the latke consumer to create a whole meal around the latkes with no need for any additional protein source at the meal. Why is this beneficial? So the latkes can be the centerpiece of the table, a perfect solution for vegetarians and lighter eaters. No need to add meat to a latke supper, just serve sour cream with your latkes for the perfect combination of vegetable (potato) and protein (sour cream)!

Sour cream never goes out of season (unlike apples) and as long as properly refrigerated, will not spoil for the whole week of Chanukah. It is the perfect cool and creamy match to the salty, oily, crispy taste of a latke. It's a match made in heaven.

For what proves to be a tasty debate, scoot on over to for a rebuttal by an esteemed scholar. Direct link coming soon...


Robin said...

Sour cream of course, hands down. No debate needed.

Happy Hannukah Phyllis, hope it's a wonderful one full of light and love.

My photography is available for purchase - visit Around the Island Photography and bring home something beautiful today!

Leora said...

My tongue prefers sour cream. My intestines are happier with apple sauce.

Chag sameach!

Caroline said...

I'm all about applesauce, but you've inspired me to make the Chanukah dinner I'm hosting on Sunday much, much lighter. Maybe the latkes WILL be the centerpiece, and I'll add a variety of toppings. Salsa or guacamole, anyone?

Becca said...

It's all about the jelly!!! :)

Yosefa said...

I agree with Leora. Except I have an unopened jar of apple sauce in my pantry because I never made or bought latkes this year! I had to much to say, so I commented on my wn log here: