I’m conflicted. I don’t know if I liked these or not. I ate an entire plateful. I must have liked them. I guess I liked them but probably not enough to go to the trouble of making them again. But, it’s fried dough, potatoes, cheese, and butter. What’s not to like? I have always been interested in pierogies but have never eaten them. I always watched the episode of Martha Stewart in which she prepared pierogies with her late mother Martha Kostyra, who died in 2007 at the age of 93. I enjoyed the interaction of Big Martha, as the elder Martha was affectionately known, and her daughter, Martha Stewart. In instances where Martha Stewart would normally chastise a guest for not doing something perfect she cut her mother a little slack. You could tell she wanted to slap the imperfectly formed pierogi right out of her mother’s hand but, out of respect, she held back. Big Martha took it all in stride. Big Martha’s recipe for pierogies calls for cooking them by boiling only and serving on a platter with melted butter. Martha Stewart comments at the end of the show that she and her mother have different opinions when it comes to presentation. Clearly Martha Stewart would have done it differently, but this show was about pierogies and that was clearly her mother’s territory.
I was watching an episode of Diner’s, Drive-Ins, and Dives with my granddaughter Amanda last week in which Guy visits a place called Nye’s Polonaise Room in Minneapolis, MN. The owner prepared his version of pierogi’s, which are similar to the standard version, but at the end, he pan fried them. He had me from the moment he poured the melted butter over them. This I had to try. Using leftover mashed potatoes, I made a version of pierogies tonight as closely resembling Nye’s as possible. The ingredients are measured in pounds and ounces in volumes to feed a small army. I had to do a little math to come up with a recipe for two but I think I came close. I will attach Nye’s recipe to this post but you’ll have to do the math yourself based on the number of servings you need.
As I sit here, still stuffed from the number of pierogies I ate, I have decided I like them. I also googled “pierogi” and found recipes for dessert versions of the little dumplings. I think I will use the leftover pierogi dough to make cinnamon apple pierogies. I know I’ll like those without having to think about it! Here is a picture of my pierogies and the recipe from Food Network. Pierogies are typically served with melted butter, sour cream and sautéed onions. I served mine alongside a smoked chicken sausage with garlic and artichoke.
- 4 pounds all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F)
- Nonstick cooking spray
Mashed Potato Filling:
- 2 pounds red potatoes
- Kosher salt
- 1 stick butter
- 4 ounces cream cheese
- 3 ounces sour cream
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
- 1 pound soft European farmer’s cheese
- Milk to thin, if necessary
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 4 ounces olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, julienned and sauteed
- Sour cream
- 1 ounce clarified butter
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
For the pierogi dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, add the flour, olive oil, eggs, salt and 2 1/2 cups warm water. Start the mixer on slow for a minute, and then switch to high for another couple of minutes until the dough pulls away from the bowl. Then slow the mixer down to medium speed and slowly add the remaining 1 cup warm water. Once the water is absorbed, return the mixer to high and let the dough beat for 10 minutes.
Remove from the bowl. Cut the dough into 4 pieces. Form into balls, spray with nonstick spray, wrap in plastic wrap and let rest in a warmer area for 20 minutes.
Spray the counter or large cutting board with the nonstick spray and begin to roll the dough with a rolling pin. Roll until a consistent thickness of 1/4-inch. Then spray with nonstick spray. (If it gets too thin, that’s ok as you can re-ball and roll out again.) Use about a 3-inch circle cutter and press down hard and give a slight twist to completely separate from the rest of the dough, continue this throughout the entire piece.
Remove the scraps and in-betweens, save, re-ball and re-roll. Then flip the circle cut-outs; they are ready to be stuffed.
For the mashed potato filling: Boil the red potatoes, leaving the skin on, in a stock pot with 2 tablespoons kosher salt. Once the potatoes are soft, drain off the water and place in the mixer bowl with the dough hook or paddle attachment. Add the butter right away so it will start to melt. Then add the cream cheese, sour cream, granulated garlic, onion powder and black and white peppers into the bowl and mix on a medium speed. Mix until smooth and free of all lumps. Now add the farmer’s cheese and mix on high for a couple minutes until a little fluffy. Season with kosher salt. Loosen with milk if necessary. Let cool.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with nonstick spray (so the delicate dough doesn’t stick. Place about 1 teaspoon of the potato and cheese filling in the center of all the cut-outs. (I like to use a bamboo skewer or large toothpick to remove the filling from the spoon to keep your hands clean.) Then pick up the dough with two hands and fold over the filling. Slightly pull out both sides at the base of the fold, then continue to pull, then pinch, and form and seal as you continue around the half moon. Double check for any areas that aren’t smooth or completely sealed. Repeat. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
In a large saucepan bring three-quarters of a gallon of water and 1 tablespoon kosher salt to a rapid boil. One by one, drop in the pierogis. Par-boil them until they float, about 5 minutes. Then place them back on the baking sheet to let cool.
To serve: Cover the bottom of a saute pan with olive oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, saute the pierogis; they should sizzle once they hit the oil. After a minute or so, flip them, looking for a golden brown color. Plate with the sauteed onions and a side of sour cream for dipping. Drizzle with the butter and sprinkle with the parsley. Enjoy!
This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional and may have been scaled down from a bulk recipe. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.
Disclaimer: Please ignore all the different spellings of the word pierogi. The recipe has it one way, google another and spellcheck wants it their way.