here and there

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Pyrohy.. Ukrainian dumpling

While in Northern Manitoba, I made pyrohy for my  brother and used the following recipe
for the dough.  Everyone has their favourite recipe, but I have found that this recipe of 4 ingredients that my Mom used is the best.  Each one of my Aunts has their favourite dough recipe with some variation, using some thing in the recipe to make a soft dough, from sour cream, baking powder, eggs to different temperatures of water.  I have found that I have been most successful using very hot water and by letting the dough rest!  Everyone agrees that the dough must sit to relax!

4 cups of flour
1 3/4 cups of hot water.. I think I used 2 cups!
1/2 tsp of salt
1/4 cup of oil.. in this case it was olive oil

Mix everything together and let rest covered for about 1/2 hour.

This recipe made 90 pyrohy for me, but it depends how thin you roll the dough out.

Divide your dough in half, cover the rest of the dough so it will not dry out.  Sprinkle flour on your working area and roll out the dough.  There are cutters you can use, but a glass will work just as well.

Near the end of my Mom's cooking career, she wondered why she had routinely cut out circles when 3 inch squares were more efficient and less time consuming! The shape would still be a triangle

My Mom's  filling was very traditional.. in the spring, she only used dry cottage cheese and dill, the rest of the time, she used cottage cheese and potatoes.. The sauerkraut that you buy needs to be washed to reduce the acidity, then squeeze it so it is dry.. you can also fry up the cabbage with some finely chopped onions.

If your filling is too wet, it is difficult to work with.

My brother enjoyed the filling very much in this batch of pyrohy.. He thought they were the best I have made.  I think because of the ricotta cheese which is very light and sweet tasting, thus the ricotta is closer in taste to homemade cottage cheese.  I used a container of creamed cottage cheese, a container of ricotta cheese and 4 medium potatoes.  The potatoes are first boiled and then mashed. 

Now here is a nice twist that one may want to try as a filling, sweet potatoes and cheese. 

The importance of pinching these dumpling securely is necessary so you don't lose your filling in the boiling water.  I usually line up the formed dumplings on a clean tea towel, which may need to be floured, depending on how moist your dough is.   Then I will again check the dumplings by pinching the sides again before placing them to freeze on a cookie sheet

In the above picture,  I freeze the dumplings on a floured saran covered cookie sheet and then repackaged in Ziplock Bags.  The Dumplings can also be cooked at this time, but after making about 7dozen of these babies, Im usually  ready to pack it in..

If pre cooking the dumplings in salted water, you need to have melted butter ready to toss the dumplings so they don't stick.  When cool they can be packaged in Ziplock bags to freeze.

My aunt pre cooks the dumplings before freezing them and then reheats them by boiling them again.

My other aunt, also pre cooks them before freezing but microwaves them to reheat. This she says is does by watching the dumplings very closing.  My other aunt felt that microwaving the pyrohy made them tough!

To test taste your dumplings, you can also just fry the uncooked dumpling in oil.. Much like the Gyoza or Japanese pot stickers!

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