When Is Hanukkah 2012 and What Should We Make?

Try these recipes for brisket, latke and sufganiyot during the Festival of Lights—and leave a comment and mark our map with your holiday traditions and memories in Fridley.

This year, Hanukkah begins on the evening of Saturday, Dec. 8 and ends on the evening of Sunday, Dec. 16.

Map your memories of family celebrations of Hanukkah or other holidays in the Fridley area here.

Observing the Festival of Lights goes hand-in-hand with making special Hanukkah foods. Before you light the menorah, make sure you have all the ingredients for some great brisket, latke, and sufganiyot. Although there are many recipes, below are a few to try during the eight nights.

Hate cooking? You can attend the many Hanukkah events in the area or pick up some prepared kosher dishes at Byerly's.

Potato Latkes

  • 3 medium/large potatoes - washed, peeled and grated
  • 1 egg for every 3 potatoes
  • Approximately 1/4 cup of flour per every 3 potatoes
  • 1 TBS onion powder per every 3 potatoes
  • 1 TBS garlic powder per every 3 potatoes


  1. Grate potatoes, drain off excess juices, add egg(s), flour, onion and garlic powders.
  2. Mix well.
  3. Place enough oil in a large frying pan to have approximately a half-inch of oil, or enough to cover the bottom half of the potatoes. 
  4. Take a heaping soup spoon full of potato mixture and place in hot oil and flatten to make a pancake, approximately a quarter to a half-inch thick. 
  5. Cook on medium heat and watch carefully as they go from being done to burnt very quickly. 
  6. At medium heat, cook approx. 4 - 5 minutes on each side. 
  7. Remove from pan when a medium to dark golden brown.
  8. Drain on paper towels then remove to plate. 
  9. Best to use tongs to turn the latkes, so oil doesn't splatter. 

Once they are ready to eat, try them with some apple sauce mixed with sugar & cinnamon, sour cream or just a sprinkling of salt.


  • 1 Brisket any size
  • 1 packet onion soup mix
  • 1 can jelled cranberry sauce
  • Orange juice


  1. Line deep baking pan with foil.
  2. Place brisket in pan.
  3. Dice up cranberry sauce and place on top of brisket.
  4. Sprinkle onion soup mix on top of brisket.
  5. Pour in enough OJ to cover brisket about half way.
  6. Cover with foil and bake at 350 until you can stick a fork in it and the fork slides out easily.
  7. Approx. 1 hr. per pound.
  8. Let cool and cut on the bias

Sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) from chabad.org


  • 2 packages yeast
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup margarine
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 or 5 cups. flour
  • 3 egg yolks
  • Jelly of your choice for filling
  • Powdered Sugar


  1. Mix water, sugar, juice, and yeast.
  2. Let stand 10 minutes.
  3. Melt margarine and add to yeast mixture.
  4. Beat in eggs and salt.
  5. Add flour, mixing and kneading by hand to form a soft dough.
  6. Let rise 1-1/2 hours.
  7. Roll dough 1/4 inch thick and cut circles (approximately 2 inches).
  8. Let circles rise 1/2 hour.
  9. Deep fry at 400° F about 3 minutes, turning once.
  10. Pipe in jelly and roll in powdered sugar.

About Hanukkah
The Jewish celebration of Hanukkah, also called the Festival of Lights, begins this year on Saturday, Dec. 8, at sundown.

In the Hebrew lunar calendar, Hanukkah is celebrated on the 25th day of the month of Kislev. Hanukkah runs for eight days and will conclude this year on the night of Dec. 16.

What is Hanukkah?

Hanukkah is a celebration commemorating the Maccabean Revolt, a battle between the Jews and the Seleucids, who ruled Israel more than 2,000 years ago.

The Jews drove the Seleucids out of Jerusalem and reclaimed their desecrated holy temple, according to the Chabad-Lubavitch Media Center

The victors found a one-day supply of olive oil that had not been contaminated by the Seleucids and used it to light the temple menorah. The miracle of Hanukkah is that the oil, which was supposed to last for only one day, burned strong for eight days, hence the length of time Hanukkah is celebrated today.

The Festival of Lights is observed in modern times by lighting a candle on the menorah on each of the eight nights. Other customs include eating traditional foods made from oil including potato latkes and deep fried donuts known as sufganiyot, and playing with a spinning top called a dreidel, which is inscribed with the Hebrew acronym for "A great miracle happened there."

How does your family celebrate Hanukkah? What are your favorite things to eat during Hanukkah? Do you have any special or traditional Hanukkah recipes in your family? Tell us in the comments section below.


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