Homemade Pierogi

Pierogi (boiled filled dumplings) were originally peasant fare native to Central and Eastern Europe; we find mention of pierogi in Polish documents as early as the 17th century. But these savory dumplings have overcome class boundaries and become popular among those in all walks of life. They're served at many festivals; and family gatherings just have to have pierogi to be complete. At the 2007 Pierogi Festival in Kraków, Poland, 30,000 pierogi were consumed daily. Homemade pierogi are also an important part of Christmas Eve celebrations in many homes, but aren't limited to the holidays; many enjoy them all year long.

Pierogi are very flexible and can be stuffed with a number of savory or sweet fillings, including potato and cheese (below); sauerkraut, cabbage, spiced meats, and even fruits and berries. Because pierogi freeze well, they make quick, satisfying last-minute meals. There are as many versions of pierogi as there are cooks who love them, and our take on this traditional treat mirrors many American pierogi recipes.

Prep
45 mins
Total
1 hr
Yield
about 3 1/2 dozen small pierogi
Homemade Pierogi

Instructions

  1. To make the dough: Mix together the flour and salt. Add the egg to the flour and combine. The dough will be quite clumpy at this stage.

  2. Work in the sour cream and soft butter until the dough comes together in a slightly rough, slightly sticky ball.

  3. Using just your fingertips, knead and fold the dough without adding additional flour until the dough becomes less sticky but still quite moist.

  4. Wrap the dough well in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes, or up to 48 hours.

  5. To make the filling: Combine the warm mashed potato and cheese. Stir and mash until the cheese is melted and the filling is cool to the touch. Taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

  6. To fill the pierogi: Roll half the dough 1/8" thick. Use a 2" round cutter to cut circles of dough. Repeat with the other half of the dough. Save the scraps; these can be snipped into small pieces and added to simmering soups.

  7. Place 1 1/2 teaspoons of filling on each round of dough. Gently fold the dough over, forming a pocket around the filling. Pinch the edges of the pierogi to seal, then seal again with the tines of a fork.

  8. At this point the pierogi can be frozen for up to 4 weeks, or refrigerated overnight, or cooked in a large stockpot of boiling salted water. Only cook about 10 pierogi at a time, so that they have room to float without sticking. When the pierogi float, they're done. The time will vary depending of if they are fresh or frozen.

  9. Sauté the shallots or onion in the butter in a large skillet until the onion begins to brown. Add the drained pierogi and cook until browned and crisped. Serve hot with additional sour cream, applesauce, or other condiments.

Tips from our Bakers

  • If your filling is a bit watery due to the potatoes, add a tablespoon of flour to help thicken it up.