Pierogi are among the first thing that Americans associate Polish people with. Pierogi, with minor differences, are popular in Poland, Lithuania, Ukraine (called varenyky) and Belarus. They are often made for certain holidays like sauerkraut and mushrooms ones for Christmas. Because it’s a lot of work to make them my mom would usually make a lot of dough, add different stuffing and freeze them. I recommend that you take a page out of her book because it’s just too much work to go through all that process just to make a few for one dinner.
I got the following recipe from my grandma who made quite a few in her day and tried a lot of different ones to get it perfect. A base for a pierogi recipe is flour, pinch of salt and an egg(s). My grandma adds a little bit of olive oil to make the dough more elastic and some hot water on the flour that makes it softer and easier to work with.
The first step is pouring 1/2 cup of hot water over flour and covering it and leaving in a warm place for about 10 minutes. That will make it easier to roll.
Set the stuffing aside for now and finish the dough by adding an egg. Knead the dough until soft and elastic. You should have some more flour and water at hand to control the consistency of the dough- if the dough is too hard you should add a little bit of water, if it’s not sticking together add some flour.
Pour some flour on a clean countertop and roll it really thin but be careful not to make a hole. You don’t have to roll all the dough at once because it may dry out. You can divide it in half and cover the other half with aluminum foil until you are ready to roll it. Then use a cookie cutter or a medium sized glass to cut around 3 inch rounds.
Then place about one teaspoon of filling (here meat) on each round piece of dough.
Now moisten the edges with water, fold over and press together.
Now secure the edges with a fork.
That is pretty much what pierog should look like.
Repeat the procedure with all the remaining dough and filling.
Bring some water in a pot to boil. Add a pinch of salt and tablespoon of olive oil. Boil pierogi until they float to the top.
That’s it, they’re ready! You can top savory ones with bacon, fried onion, sour cream or sweet cream or sugar if they have sweet filling! Enjoy!
If you tried that recipe and posted a pic or comment use hashtag #EasternEuropeanRecipes I’d love to see how it turned out!
- 4 cups of flour
- 1/2 cup of hot water
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- Mix flour, hot water and olive oil, cover and leave in a warm place for 10 minutes.
- Add an egg to the dough and knead until soft and elastic. Roll the dough and cut 3 inch rounds.
- Place about 1 teaspoon of stuffing on each round, fold over and press with a fork.
- Boil until they will float to the top.