One of the foods my husband introduced me to, back when we first started dating, was the pierogi. (My mom probably had made them at some point, but I just don't recall.) My first memory of them was being over at a mutual friend's home, and his dad making them for all of us. I was so disappointed to only get three! They were large, and very filling, but so good I just wanted more. Since then, we've bought the frozen variety at wal-mart, and have been satisfied, but when I came across this recipe for Quick Potato Pierogis, I knew we had to try it. We varied it slightly, and will change it more in the future, but as for now, here's how it goes together.
1 1/2 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks (we used about 2 pounds)
4 to 5 tablespoons unsalted butter + a little extra to melt and drizzle over the dumplings
3 onions, finely chopped (food processors are great for this, or else it takes forever)
Salt and black pepper to taste
1 to 2 packages of gyoza (pot sticker) wrappers (we didn't even use a full package, but it had 60 wrappers in it)
3 to 5 green onions, thinly sliced or 1/4 cup chopped chives or 2 tablespoons chopped parsley or additional fried onions, to serve (we did butter and parsley)
Put a pot of salt water on to boil, and prepare your potatoes while it heats.
When the potatoes are tender, (stick a fork in one, and if it goes in very easily, it's ready), strain the water out and set aside.
Chop your onions while the potatoes are boiling. You can either mince them by hand, or employ the use of a food processor.
When the onions are all minced, melt the butter in a large saucepan. Once it is completely melted, add the onions and sauté until they are tender and begin to turn brown.
Once the onions are sautéed to your liking, pour them, butter and all, into a mixing bowl with the potatoes. Mash them all together, and season with salt and pepper. Hubby and I decided to add a bit of cheese in as well. (The last of what we had in the fridge, a bit of shredded Co-Jack, and a bit of shredded Mozzerella.)
You are now ready to start filling your wrappers.
Give yourself a generous supply of water to help with this process. Normally at this point you'd take a cookie cutter or something along those lines to cut the wrappers into nice circular shapes. Unfortunately, my cookie cutters are still lost with the mysterious missing kitchen box, the only box we lost in our move at the beginning of summer. Suffice it to say, Hubby and I made geometrically-shaped pierogis.
Dip your finger in the water and run it along the outer edge of the wrapper. Spoon some of your filling onto the center of the wrapper. Be careful not to put too much!
You'll figure out the perfect amount, but it is best to err on the side of too little filling, as too much keeps the pierogi from sealing completely.
Fold the corners, (or edges, if you cut yours into a circle) together. Press your finger firmly along the edges, to seal it. Try to expel any air that you can from the inside as you do this.
Your pierogi is complete! Rinse, repeat, until all filling is used up.
Once the pierogis are complete, you can either freeze them for later use, refrigerate them for later that day, or you can cook them immediately. If you're going to freeze them, do so in a single layer, as if you do not, they will form a giant frozen ball of pierogi.
If you want to cook them, you can either boil them in a single layer in a pot of boiling salt water for 2-3 minutes per batch, or you can sauté them in butter (still single layer batches,) until they begin to brown, then add 1/4-1/2 in. of water in the pan, cover, and cook for 3-4 minutes. When the water evaporates, the pierogis are tender and not mushy, they are done.
When they are cooked, you can garnish with what you will. (See above ingredient list.) We chose to garnish ours with melted butter and parsley. MMMMM!