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How to Remove Eight Hanukkah Stains from Clothes


Hanukkah or Chanukah is an eight-day Jewish holiday that falls in late November or in December of the secular calendar. It is a holiday filled with traditions to celebrate the miracle of the Hanukkah oil. Those traditions include lighting a candle in the hanukkiyah or menorah each night and eating fried foods like latkes and sufganiyot (jelly-filled doughnuts). As you celebrate Hanukkah, there are bound to be stains but they can be but memories if you learn how to treat them correctly.

1. Candle Wax

The hanukkiyah or menorah holds eight candles. A candle is lit on the first night of Hanukkah and an additional candle is lit each night of the celebration. Many homes have turned to electrical or fiber optic candles, but if you are still using the traditional wax candle, there are sure to be drips.

Candle wax is simple to remove by following these steps. Be sure to treat it promptly because the dye in colored candles is one of the most difficult stains to remove.

2. Latkes

Traditional latkes are made of shredded white potatoes and onions and then fried to a crispy goodness. It its, of course, the oil that can cause some problems if it splatters during cooking or if a latke lands in a lap!

As a change from the traditional recipe, why not try this sweet potato version for your next Hanukkah. If you happen to drop a bit, just follow the links to remove the stains.

Sweet Potato Latkes

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and finely grated
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons finely ground almonds
  • 4 tablespoons chopped dates
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • Powdered sugar

    In a large bowl, combine sweet potatoes, eggs, sugar, salt and ground almonds to make a thick batter. Mix well. Fold in dates and pecans. In a large skillet, heat oil to 375 degrees F. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of potato mixture into oil, flattening with the back of a wet spoon. Brown latkes on both sides – about 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper toweling. Dust with powdered sugar. Serve hot with sweetened whipped cream or applesauce. Makes 3 dozen latkes.

  • 3. Applesauce

    The hardest part of making applesauce is deciding what type of apple to use. It's hard to make a mistake with homemade applesauce but you'll find the best flavors from Rome Beauty, McIntosh, Jonathan, Stayman or Cortland varieties.


  • 2 pound cooking apples, peeled, cored and sliced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • dash of cinnamon
  • dash of ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

    In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add apples, cinnamon and cloves and bring to boiling. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer about 10 minutes if you like chunky applesauce; 15 minutes for smoother applesauce. Stir the apples to break them up. When the applesauce is the texture you like, add the sugar. Makes about 4 cups or 6 to 8 servings.

    Fortunately, applesauce is a simple stain to remove. Just launder garment as usual following clothing label directions.

  • 4. Sufganiyot - Jelly-filled doughnuts

    Today's sufganiyot are sometimes offered with chocolate or lemon filling or the dough is flavored with spices. Here is a traditional recipe that is worth every stain that is dropped!

    Jelly-Filled Doughnuts

  • 2 packages granular yeast
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup lukewarm water
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup margarine
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 to 5 cups flour
  • 3 egg yolks
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Jelly of your choice (strawberry, blueberry, apple) for filling
  • Powdered Sugar

    Mix water, sugar, juice, and yeast. Let stand 10 minutes. Melt margarine, cool slightly and add to yeast mixture. Beat in eggs and salt. Add flour, mixing and kneading by hand to form a soft dough. Let rise 1-1/2 hours. Roll dough 1/4 inch thick and cut circles (approximately 2 inches). Let circles rise 1/2 hour.

    Heat oil. Deep fry at 400° F about 3 minutes, turning once. Pipe in jelly and roll in powdered sugar.

  • 5. Loukoumades - Fried Honey Puffs

    Loukoumades is a favorite Hanukkah tradition from Greece, Turkey and the Middle East. Very similar to a doughnut, it is fried balls of dough that are served with a honey lemon sauce. Messy but worth every single stain that might drop!

    Fried Honey Puffs

  • 1 packet granulated yeast
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 cups lukewarm water; divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

    In a large bowl, combine yeast and sugar with 1/2 cup of the warm water. Let sit for five minutes and stir in remaining 1-1/2 cups warm water along with the egg, flour, salt and vanilla. Mix until batter is thick but smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in size, about 1 to 1-1/2 hours.

    Heat 3- to 4-inches of oil to 375 degrees F. While oil is heating, prepare honey-lemon syrup. Add honey, sugar, and water to a small saucepan, mix to combine and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sugar is completely dissolved. Stir in lemon juice, lemon zest, and simmer until lightly thickened. Remove from heat and keep warm.

    To fry dough balls, slide a heaping tablespoon of dough into hot oil. Do not crowd fryer. The dough will puff up and float to the surface. Fry, turning occasionally, until pastry is a crisp, golden brown on all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.

    Before serving place 4 or 5 fried puffs into the warm honey-lemon syrup. Allow puffs to soak for about 10 to 15 seconds and then remove to a small plate. The puffs can be dusted with cinnamon or powdered sugar. Serve warm. Makes about 36-40 puffs.

  • 6. Chocolate Gelt Coins

    Gelt is a Yiddish word for money. Many Jewish children are given chocolate gelt coins on one of the nights of Hanukkah. Chocolate stains are simple to remove by just following these tips.

    7. Brisket

    Almost every family has their own special - and often secret - recipe for brisket. Brisket is a cut of meat from the lower part of a cow's chest. It is a hard working muscle and is filled with connective tissue so it must be cooked slowly in the oven, on the stovetop or in a smoker to make the meat tender. Here's a great Hanukkah brisket and if you make a few stains, just follow the links.

    Hanukkah Brisket

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 (4 pound) beef brisket
  • 2 onions, thickly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half
  • Salt and pepper to taste

    Place oil in a heavy Dutch Oven and heat on medium-high. Season the brisket generously with salt and black pepper. Place in the pan and cook until the underside surface is a rich brown color. Lift the roast and scatter the onions in the pan. Place the uncooked side of the roast down onto the onions. Repeat the browning process. Add the garlic to the pan and fill with enough water to almost cover the roast. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and cover with a tight fitting lid. Simmer for 4 hours, turning the roast over once halfway through. Remove the brisket to a serving platter. Bring the broth in the pan to a simmer, scraping the bottom to loosen any browned bits. Cook until reduced to a thin gravy. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if needed.

  • 8. Challah

    Challah is a leavened bread served on the Jewish Sabbath and during festival holidays including Hanukkah. Two loaves are placed on the table and are usually braided but can be made into other shapes.


  • 2 packages granulated dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup sugar, divided
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 7 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon salt

    In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of sugar, yeast and warm water. Let the yeast work for five minutes. Then, add the rest of the sugar, salt and half of the flour. Mix well. Then add beaten egg and vegetable oil. Slowly add remaining flour, the dough will be quite stiff and thick. When the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, turn it onto a floured surface& knead for approximately 10 minutes.

    Place dough into a large oiled bowl turning the dough once so its oiled on all sides. Cover with a damp towel & let rise in a warm place for 2 hours, punching down in 4-5 places every 20 minutes. After 2 hours, turn dough out onto working surface. Cut dough in half. Form each half into three equal long pieces. Braid the pieces pinching the ends together and tucking them under. Place both loaves on baking sheet and let rise for 30 minutes. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake 30 minutes or until golden brown.

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