Prairie Wheat Perogy Party
Perogy, peirogi, varenyky or pedaheh are delicious soft dumplings brought to the Canadian west from our Eastern European foremothers. Widely available in the grocery freezer, but nothing compares to the soft homemade dough and your own creative fillings. Make a couple of batches of dough, create fillings you like and get everyone together to roll, fill and pinch and share the finished deliciousness.
Tip: For more than one recipe, prepare each batch of dough and filling separately.
Prep Time: Dough and resting - one hour and 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 40 perogies
3 cups (750 mL) all purpose flour, approximately
1 tsp (5 mL) salt
1 cup (250 mL) warm water
1/4 cup (50 mL) canola oil
In a large mixing bowl whisk together warm water, canola oil and egg. In another bowl blend flour with salt. With a wooden spoon or large electric beaters on low, slowly add flour mixture to the wet ingredients until a sticky dough is formed.
Move to a floured surface and knead in additional flour if necessary. For a smooth elastic dough, knead for another five minutes to activate the gluten. Brush a large bowl with a little oil, place dough inside, cover and allow dough to rest for one hour.
Cut dough into two portions. On a lightly floured surface roll dough firmly until thin but not transparent, about 1/8" (.3 cm) thick. With a large glass or biscuit cutter dipped in flour press out rounds of dough. The rounds will contract a bit when cut, gently pull to about 1.5 inch (7cm) circle and fill with prepared filling on one side. Be careful not to get filling onto edges.
Fold dough over filling so that the edges touch and pinch together with fingers. Carefully lift filled perogy on to a parchment lined baking sheet. Freeze perogies until firm and transfer into large freezer bags or containers.
Cut out circles in the entire piece of dough, reroll leftover dough and repeat. Complete with both portions of dough.
To cook perogies, bring 4 cups (1 L) of water and 1 tsp (5 mL) of salt to a rolling boil. With a slotted spoon add about six perogies at a time. When perogies are cooked they will rise to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a warm platter or in a bowl. Add selected toppings and serve immediately.
These measurements will fill 40 perogy dough rounds – 1 Tbsp (15 mL) each.
Cheese and potato are the most common. Try different combinations of meat and potato or mushrooms. Filling must not be too moist, as this makes the edges difficult to seal.
1 cups (500 mL) plain mashed potatoes
1 cup (250 mL) grated firm cheese (cheddar works best)
2 Tbsp (30 mL) finely chopped green onion, parsley or dill
4 slices cooked bacon, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped and sautéed
In a mixing bowl blend potatoes, cheese, and green onion/parsley/dill. Use a spoon and carefully place filling in the centre of each dough round. Seal by pinching the edges with fingers. Freeze.
Perogies can be served with cooked bacon, onions and melted butter. Serve with sour cream and assorted herbs if desired.
The fruit filling should be washed, dry, fresh and whole. If too moist, the filling will fall out of the dough.
3 cups (750 mL) dry fresh berries (Saskatoon's, blueberries, raspberries, pitted cherries)
½ cup (125 mL) dry cottage cheese, cut up cream cheese or ricotta
Sprinkle of cinnamon sugar
Very gently toss fruit with cheese, fill perogy and sprinkle with sugar and seal. Freeze before cooking. Serve with yogurt, sour cream or whipped cream and additional berries if desired.