Pierogies, or Polish dumplings, are comfort food for many people when the weather turns cool. Cook up some delicious and unique pierogies this winter and make them a new family favorite.
The Pierogi Dough
Many people believe the secret to great pierogi dough is making it with sour cream. It makes the dough flaky and tender and adds a terrific flavor.
If you don't want to use sour cream, then milk can be substituted or even vegetable oil and water; however, the texture of the dough will come out different. The sour cream definitely makes a more delicate and flavorful dough.
But no matter what ingredients you use for the dough, be sure not to over-knead it, as it will get tough. You should also let it rest for an hour or two so the flavor and texture comes together.
When preparing the dough to be filled, roll it out to about 1/8-inch thick and about 3-inches round, you can use a circle cookie cutter to get the perfect round shape. You don't want the dough to be too thick because it can get gummy or too thin because then the filling may fall out. And, when you are sealing the pierogies, use a dab of water to make sure they are closed properly so the filling does not fall out.
The Pierogi Filling
Speaking of filling, there are multiple options with which to fill pierogies. Traditional fillings include potato, onions, and cheese or sauerkraut, but you can fill them with a few types of cheese, sausage, shrimp, cabbage, mushrooms, spinach, beef, chicken...the list goes on and on.
You can even make sweet pierogies with blueberry, apple, strawberry, or chocolate filling. No matter what the filling is, just make sure it is not too heavy or the pierogi will become too dense and filling, especially a heavy filling, can bust open the dough when cooking.
The Pierogi Topping
After the pierogies are cooked, many people serve them topped with sour cream, sautéed onions, butter, or grated cheese. They can also be topped with sautéed bacon, mushrooms, or applesauce. Try to top the pierogies with ingredients similar to the filling. For example, if you are filling them with cheese and onions, add some butter sautéed onions to the top.