A classic polish dish is Pierogi Ruskie. In Poland, many street cafés serve this speciality to Poles and tourists alike. This extremely traditional dish has been made in the Polish region since the 13th century; although bearing a resemblance to dumplings, it is much more filling and extravagant. The most popular type of filling is “ruskie”, which is made up of sour cheese, onion and mashed potato. A variety of other fillings can be used, such as a Bolognese sauce . However, the recipe below is for the classic “ruskie” filling; which makes around 30-40 pierogi. It is very easy to adapt this recipe, say if you are short of time, why not just make the tasty filling?
- 12oz/350g warm cooked mashed potato: where you will also need 50-75 ml of warm milk and a dollop of butter
- 3oz/90g cream cheese
- 3oz/90g curd cheese
- 1 large onion
The Dough/ Pastry
- 225g plain flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 75ml warm water
- To start the filling mixture, finely chop one large onion, and cook it in roughly 110g butter (just enough to line the bottom of pan) until it is golden brown.
- Boil the potatoes in a pan and drain them. Add the hot milk and mash with hot butter.
- Combine the potato and onion to make a warm mix.
- In a large bowl, take the warm mix add the cheese and combine together. This is now the complete filling mixture, and leave this to cool.
- Next make the dough by sifting the flour and salt into a bowl. Then make a well in the centre and add the egg and water; then mix until the mixture resembles a dough. Then turn out the dough onto a floured board and knead it until smooth. Then chill this mix in the fridge for 15-30 minutes.
- Roll out the cool mixture, on a floured surface until it is quite thin, about 2mm. Using a biscuit cutter, cut out pastry rounds about 6-7cm in diameter.
- When you hold a round in the palm of your hand, use a teaspoon to place a little of the filling in the centre, and then fold the dough over to enclose the filling. Finally, pinch the edges of the dough together firmly using your thumb and index finger, making sure the filling is firmly sealed in. You have now completed the actual pierogi.
- Repeat step 7, until all the dough and filling has been used up.
- Cook the pierogi in a large saucepan of steadily boiling, salted water for 3 minutes. Drain and serve straight away.
- If you want a real treat, then fry the Pierogi gently in butter for 5 minutes until the dough has turned golden and slightly crisp, season with salt and pepper and serve.