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Sunday, October 8, 2017

Pierogi



Pierogi is actually the plural of pierog, a Polish word that means dumplings made up of unleavened dough. These dumplings are first boiled then baked or fried in butter. Pierogi's are normally semi circle shape and may be stuffed with mashed potato filling of potato and cheese, potato and onion, cheese, cabbage, sauerkraut, ground meat, mushroom, spinach or fruit. Pierogi are often served with a side of melted butter, sour cream, fried bacon crumbles, sauteed mushrooms, and onioin. Dessert pierogi are filled with fruit filling and may be topped with applesauce, maple syrup, chocolate sauce and / or whipped cream.



The Eastern European immigrants are responsible for popularizing the dish in the United States. Considered a family food and served in ethnic restaurants Churches would sell fresh cooked pierogi to help raise money following World War II. The 1960s would find pierogi in the frozen food section of the grocery store as well making it easier for those that wanted to enjoy pierogi with no time to cook. 



In other countries pierogi is a main dish of its own however, in America they are considered a side dish. The Pittsburgh Pirates make a pierogi race at every home game. There are six pierogi costume wearing runners that race to the finish line between innings. You can make up your own delicious pierogi by following this recipe:





3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
pinch salt
2 Tbsp. butter, melted
3/4 cup milk
1 large egg
1/3 cup water (approx)
Filling:
2/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 cups fresh or frozen (don't thaw them) blueberries or saskatoon berries
butter, for cooking (optional)
sour cream or whipped cream, for serving


In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl (or Pyrex measuring cup) stir together the butter, milk and egg; add to the flour mixture and stir until you have a dry, shaggy mixture. Add the water about a third at a time, until you have a soft, slightly sticky dough. Knead it about 10 times, then cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let rest on the countertop for 20 minutes.

To make the filling, stir together the sugar and flour; stir in the blueberries. On lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a scant 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch round cutter, cut into rounds. Stretch each round slightly; fill with a spoonful of the blueberry mixture, ensuring you get some of the sugar-flour in there as well.

Pull dough over filling into semicircle; pinch edges together to seal. Cover with tea towel. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Freeze in a single layer or cook immediately.

In large pot of lightly salted water, boil perogies in batches, until they float to the top and the dough is tender, about 10 minutes. With slotted spoon, transfer to dish; drizzle with butter to prevent sticking. If you like, brown the well-drained boiled perogies in a hot pan with butter until crisp and golden; dribble the remaining butter from the pan overtop. Serve with sour cream or whipped cream. Makes about 3 dozen peroghies.

recipe resource here

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