Hanukkah is the Jewish celebration of the triumph of the Maccabees over the Greeks defending their temple in Modi'in, according to online resource Judaism 101. After the battle, there was only enough oil in the temple to last one day but it somehow lasted eight days. Hanukkah, also known as the festival of lights, is celebrated by prayers, lighting the menorah and a special menu.
Slow oven-roasted beef brisket, provides a savory gravy for leftovers. Accompany the brisket with crispy potato pancakes fried in oil. The usage of oil in the meal reflects the miracle of the oil in the temple. The trick to any fried food is getting the oil hot enough to cook the outside of the food crispy, but not so hot the outside burns before the inside of the food is cooked through. Adding a grated onion to the potatoes zips up the flavor. A dinner salad of crunchy lettuce provides a texture contrast to the tender beef. The vinegar cuts through the richness of the potato pancakes. Homemade applesauce is the traditional topping for the pancakes. Fried jelly filled doughnuts, called "sufganiots," are dessert.
Hanukkah takes place over eight days. Serve a Hanukkah-themed brunch on Saturday or Sunday. Fried apple fritters start the day off right and take the place of the jelly doughnuts and the applesauce in the traditional menu. Serve chicken sausages in place of pork sausages since pork isn't allowed on a Jewish menu. Form the grated potatoes into nests. Deep fry and fill with a poached egg. If you don't have a deep fryer, make potato pancakes that have a depression and fill with a fried egg.
An alternative to the beef brisket is to serve a fish dish. Drag out your summertime grill and serve a grilled Hanukkah supper. Grill salmon steaks or a whole salmon if you're serving a crowd. Skewer baby Yukon, purple and red potatoes and grill. Brush the potatoes with olive oil. Combine sour cream--there's no meat in this menu so dairy products are allowed--with fresh dill, parsley and grated lemon juice for an easy sauce for the salmon. Serve a salad of mesclun--baby greens-- apple slices and walnuts served with a honey-mustard vinaigrette. And for desert, well it's a bit difficult to grill doughnuts, so serve fried jelly doughnuts as a finishing traditional touch.