In order to get pancakes with a really crisp, outer crust, you need to dry out the potato and onion before cooking so that they brown well.Â Using a box grater or food processor, coarsely grate both the potatoes and onions. Put the vegetables together in a cheesecloth or a tea towel and twist it to squeeze out as much of the excess liquid as you can. Then dump the grated vegetables into a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the chives. Fold in the egg whites to bind the mixture together.
Preheat the oven to 200ËšF. Heat 1/4 inch oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Drop about 2 tablespoons of the potato mixture into the hot oil and use a spatula to gently flatten it into a thin pancake about 4 inches in diameter. You want them to fry up thin and crispy. Add another couple of pancakes to the pan, if thereâ€™s room. Fry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until golden. Use a spatula to carefully lift the pancakes out of the pan, and drain on a platter lined with paper towels. Season with salt while the pancakes are still hot and put them in the oven to keep them hot. Continue frying, adding more oil as needed, until all of the mixture is used up. Serve immediately with applesauce.
Edited: October 15th, 2009