The August 2010 Daring Cooks’ Challenge was hosted by LizG of Bits n’ Bites and Anula of Anula’s Kitchen. They chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make pierogi from scratch and an optional challenge to provide one filling that best represents their locale.
Perogies. Or pierogies. Or potstickers. Lots of different cultural takes on these stuffed dumplings. I made a traditional Russian type filling, and experimented with the other. While it didn't really represent Canada per se, my second stuffing brought together flavors that I do love.
The dough came together well, a simple dough of flour, egg, salt, and water. The only difficulty was in cutting it out, as the dough seemed more inclined to stretch than to submit to my biscuit cutter. That said, the same stretch came in handy when wrapping the dough around the stuffing.
The Russian filling of mashed potato, onion, and bacon was delicious. I was supposed to use cottage cheese but had none, so made some yogurt cheese by putting plain yogurt through a sieve lined with cheesecloth. While I put things together it dripped over a bowl and I had a drier yogurt to add in. The tang was a nice compliment to the rest of the ingredients.
For the others we sauteed some minced garlic, added butter and white wine and then chopped spinach. This was cooked and cooled, then stirred into ricotta cheese. It made for a savory filling that was my favorite.
One fun thing about this was enlisting the girls, who happily filled and sealed perogies while I made more dough as needed. I think of the whole batches, I actually made about four. The kids took care of the rest and enjoyed doing it.
The perogies were simmered and then fried in butter. The frying step made the outside nice and crispy. Another big hit for me, my hubby, and the three girls.