Pierogis are filled dumplings, and they’re mostly associated with the cooking of Central and Eastern European Nations, but they go by different names in those other nations. In Poland they are referred to as pierogis, but in Russia they are known by vareniki.
A POLISH RECIPE
In this recipe the pierogis are filled with cabbage, but more commonly they are filled with potatoes, and I’ve already shared that they can be stuffed with fruit for a dessert option. In other nations, they fill theirs with meats. I imagine the choices can be endless, but these are the traditional selections.
Every New Year’s Day I grew up having pierogis and gwumpkies or golumpkies at my grandparents (maternal) house until we moved away from Arizona when I was entering the 3rd grade. Pierogis are one of my favorite foods, probably because there’s a mixture of dough and butter.
Ingredients for Filling:
- 1 Small Onion
- 3 Tbsp Butter
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
Ingredients for Dough:
- 2 1/2 Cups Flour
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1 Egg
- 1/2 Cup Cold Water
Instructions for Fillings:
- Chop onion and shred cabbage.
- Cook onion and cabbage in 3 tbsp of butter in frying pan on medium-low heat; season to taste w/ salt and pepper.
- Simmer until tender.
Instructions for Dough and Putting it all Together:
- Sift flour and salt together, and then add egg, and work ingredients into a dough, gradually adding 1/2 cup cold water.
- Knead dough on floured surface until firm and smooth.
- Roll into ball and let it set for 10 minutes beneath a warm inverted bowl.
- Take 1/3 dough at a time, roll thin, and then with a biscuit cutter, cut dough into circles.
- Place a spoonful of filling in center of circle, fold in half and press edges together and crimp to ensure seal.
- Drop pierogis into boiling, salted water and cook for 10 minutes.
- After pierogis are filled and cook, pour melted butter over them.
These are my all-time favorite pierogis, however I have also had them with fruit filling as a dessert, and they were unexpectedly wonderful. As I’ve mentioned before, I have some Sicilian in me on my mother’s side, because her mom was Sicilian, but I’m also Polish, which comes from my mom’s dad.
When we lived in Arizona, meals at my maternal grandparents house were always a treat, because not only did they have quite a spread, but it was very ethnic; Italian on one side and Polish on the other side.
Gwumpkies or golumpkies, aka Polish stuffed cabbage rolls, was another Polish dish my grandpa would make for New Year’s day. This also features cabbage, however rather than stuffing the cabbage, it is meat and rice that is stuffed into cooked cabbage leaves.
This is not a recipe that I have ever cooked personally, though my mom still faithfully prepares a lot of the recipes that were passed down to her.
What are your favorite holiday recipes? Is there some favorite dish that was handed down in your family, or is there something that you make every year that gets requested? Please feel free to share, because I love trying new recipes!
I hope everyone has a blessed New Year’s day and a safe, healthy, and prosperous 2021!