Pierogi triumph

The pierogi were not nearly as much work as I first thought. I followed the dough recipe exactly, including the part where all of it is hand-prepped (including the kinda icky part where the raw egg is mixed into the flour). But I was in for the full experience and while it was a little gunky, I would most certainly do it again.

I opted for the Cheese & Potato Pierogi Filling (on page 462 of Strybel's book) with a topping of carmelized onions. This was cry-worthy good food.

I love absolutely everything my Vita-Mix can do, but the Cheese & Potato filling recipe has to be the single most delightful that has ever been mixed in mine. Here's the recipe: Cook 1 lb potato in skins until tender, peel under cold running water, and mash well or grind together with 1/4-1/2 lb. farmer cheese. (The proportion of potatoes to cheese is a matter of preference and may be varied according to taste.) In 2 tablespoons butter lightly brown 2 finely chopped onions and add to mixture... Salt & Pepper to taste. A dash or two of paprika and/or homemade herb pepper will provide added zest. (I could not find any farmer cheese, so I opted for cottage cheese.)

Here is the dough recipe and instructions for cooking as they appear on page 457 in Polish Heritage Cookery by Robert and Maria Strybel:

Sift about 2 1/2 cups flour into breadboard. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Make a volcano-like crater in the flour mound and deposit 1 egg into it. Work ingredients into a dough, gradually adding about 1/2 cup cold water in a thin stream. (Some Polish cooks prefer lukewarm or even hot water.) Knead dough on floured board until firm and smooth, roll it into a ball, and let it rest 10 minutes or so beneath a warm inverted bowl. Take 1/3 of the dough at a time (leaving the rest beneath the bowl) and roll out thin. With glass or biscuit-cutter cut dough into circles. Place a spoonful of filling on each circle slightly off-center, fold in half and press edges together with fingers, crimping to ensure a tight seal. Drop small batches of pierogi into a fairly large pot of salted boiling water, making sure not to crowd them. When boiling resumes, reduce heat to a slow boil and cook about 10 minutes. Test one to see how well dough is cooked. Remove to a colander with slotted spoon and rinse lightly with cold water. Serve hot with topping of choice or let them cool and then fry them in butter to a nice golden brown. ...makes 25-30 pierogi or roughly 4 servings.

For the soup which helped balance this dinner, I fell back on the whatever-vegetables-I-have-in-my-house vegetable soup.

And, of course, there was corn-on-the-cob. As there will be for three more nights. (Picture of corn above from www.pickyourown.org/freezingcorn)