Thursday, April 30, 2015


With a title and a picture like this, I need to do a lot of explaining, which will be my pleasure, really.

 Yapchik is a polish cholent. Its main difference from traditional cholent is that it lacks beans and barley. The best description of yapchik would be to call it a meat potato kugel. It’s truly decadent, in a manly sort of way. It’s made in a crockpot or pot and cooked overnight. Grated potatoes on the bottom, a layer of meat in the middle, and grated potatoes on top.

The top, bottom, and sides should come out nice and crisp. My mother and her siblings used to fight over the "crispy parts". 

My great grandmother used to make this for her family for Shabbos many years ago in Poland. It’s cool that a recipe that was served to my grandfather as a young boy is now being served to my children so many generations later.

I actually made yapchik for my first time this pesach. It’s the perfect pesach cholent because it has no barley or beans. Erev the chag, I was facetiming with my sister in-law and brother in-law. I was proudly showing them around my kosher la’pesach kitchen, and for a nice effect, I opened the crock pot lid and said, “Here’s our yapchik.” My brother in-law then urgently said, “How do you know how to make yapchik?” I felt flattered and confused by his question. I mean, I thought we were the only family these days making yapchik. I know it’s a common recipe- meat potato kugel, overnight kugel and the like- but actually recognizing it by the name of yapchik was a surprise. He went on to explain that he was served some somewhere- maybe by a deli or by his rebbi’s wife- and it was really very good. He even sounded envious!

When I actually served it to my husband, father in-law and mother in-law, the men had asked for seconds and then for third portions. We made a huge yapchik and there was barely any left! My little man, also could not eat it fast enough.

It’s a bit of a patchka, so I would recommend saving it for special times, like shavous, which will be here shortly!

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 12+ hours
Yields: 8-10 servings

1/3 cup oil + more
10 potatoes, peeled
1 onion
2 eggs, beaten
½ teaspoon salt
A pinch of pepper
flour (or a wet piece of matza)- optional
Flanken (Enough to lay down across the bottom of your crock pot/pot)

This recipe could be made in a 4 quart pot or crockpot- I’m just going to refer to it as crockpot throughout the directions.
1.       Place a thick layer of oil on the bottom of your crockpot (the 1/3 cup oil will be used later).
2.       Take 2 or 3 potatoes and slice them in circles. Then layer them on the bottom of the crockpot. Turn the crockpot on low, while prepping the rest of the yapchik
3.       Grate the remainder of your potatoes or put them in the food processor. Continue to grate (or food process) your onion- this will help prevent the potatoes from turning brown.
4.       Add the eggs, flour (matza), oil, salt, and pepper. Mix well together- either in the food processor or with your hands!
5.       Place half of the yapchik batter in the crockpot. Then cover the yopchik batter generously with the meat. Pour remaining batter on top of the meat.
6.       Everyone’s crockpot is different. From my last experience making yapchik, I would keep the crockpot on low if I were to cook it for over 24 hours or keep it on high if I plan on cooking it for less than 24 hours. Last time, I cooked it on 2 hours of high and then 18 hours on low and it was not crispy enough to my liking- although it was still delicious. I’m still experimenting with this, as you could see!


  1. I made it for Shabbos. Tatty loves it!!!!
    Zaidy Mtl. would be proud!!!!!!!

    1. :) Hope to make it for the shabbos before shavuos, iy"H. I'm excited!

  2. Is that 10 little yellow potatoes like in the picture above? Potatoes can vary so much in size.

    1. You're right! Those potatoes were actually quite big! It's an estimation, honestly. I would say 10 medium-large potatoes. It makes a lot this recipe.

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