These are a staple at church picnics and block parties in the Coal Region where they are known as “bleenies” (not “blinis”, a flour pancake served in Europe.) They are a close cousin to “latkes” and often served as a meatless option during Lent. Every family has their own favorite recipe, this is just one of many versions.


  • 6 medium white or russet potatoes
  • 1 medium onion, grated
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons flour (approximate)
  • black pepper, to taste
  • salt to taste after frying


  1. Peel and grate potatoes. Squeeze dry.
  2. Mix potatoes (except salt) and all other ingredients together.
  3. Add oil to large frying pan, about 1/2 inch deep in pan. On medium high heat, scoop a couple tablespoons of the pancake mixture into pan and flatten with the back of a spoon. (Amount depends on the size of the pancakes you want) Fry until brown on one side, flip, brown on the other. Make sure potatoes are cooked through.
  4. Drain on paper towels. Salt now to taste. Hold warm in 200F oven if desired.
  5. Serve with with sour cream and/or apple sauce if desired.

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