For the holiday season, I'm asking CafeMoms to share their family's favorite holiday recipes—I love learning about how other families celebrate, don't you?
Today, I'm so excited because Aidensmomma508 has agreed to share her family's recipe for homemade pierogis, which they have been making every Christmas Eve for more than 100 years. Wow!
Here's what Aidensmomma508 had to say about this recipe and her family's holiday traditions:
"As a Polish family, we celebrate Christmas as a family on Christmas Eve with all the aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. We have a Polish dinner with pierogies, kielbasa, borscht, rye bread, as well as regular snacks like cheese ball with crackers, Christmas cookies, and brownies."
Pierogi Recipe from Aidensmomma508 (recipe makes about 200 pierogi)
5 lbs potatoes (russets mash up easiest and fluffiest)
2 lbs Farmers Cheese
Salt and pepper
Peel and cut up potatoes. Cook until tender. Drain and cool. Mash or put potatoes through ricer. Do the same with Farmers Cheese. Mix together potatoes, cheese. eggs, salt, and pepper.
3 cups water
4 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
4 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
Flour, nearly 5 lbs
Mix milk, water, butter, and salt in 4-cup measuring cup or bowl, and microwave, stirring a few times just until butter melts. Place eggs in large bowl, add milk/water mixture, mix together well. Add flour until stiff. Begin with about 9-10 cups.
Knead dough until it is fairly smooth and well-mixed. Dough needs enough flour to be firm but not so much that it is dry. Cut dough into two pieces and place in zip lock bags, flattening it out and trying to get as much touching the plastic so surfaces are not exposed to the air so they don't get crusty. Refrigerate for at least one hour so the dough can rest. (I like the dough best after it has been in the refrigerator for several hours so many times I make it the night before.)
Once the dough has rested, cut a piece 1/4 of the width of the dough. Place the bag of dough back in the refrigerator. Stretch the dough out lengthwise and flour it well. Put the dough through the machine on the "1" setting. Flour it again, and run it through on the "3" setting. Cut dough in half. Flour it again, and run it through on the "5" setting. Try to keep the dough about the width of your cutter as you put it through the noodle machine. You can also roll the dough by hand. Either in strips or cutting small pieces and rolling each circle.
Cut the circles and place them on a well floured surface. I have a cutter made by Wilton that has a nice cushioned top.
To fill the pierogi, use a heaping teaspoon of potato and cheese mixture. Shape it so none is near the edges. Put a small amount of water on the lower inside edge of the dough with your finger. Fold the top down and press the dough together to seal. It is really important to get the seal closed or the filling will come out when you cook them.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Drop the pierogi in one at a time while you are gently stirring the water. The idea here is to keep them from sticking to the bottom of the pot or each other. As soon as they are all in reduce the heat to between medium low and medium. The goal is to keep the pierogi cooking but not boiling. Cook them for 5 minutes if you are going to freeze them; cook them for 10 minutes to eat immediately. Use a slotted spoon and carefully remove each pierogi to a rack. I put towels under the rack to contain dripping water.
When the pierogi are cool enough to handle move them to a tray or pan lined with plastic wrap. Use plastic wrap between layers then cover with plastic wrap. Make sure the pierogi don't touch each other or they will stick together. Place the pierogi in the freezer.
When the pierogi are completely frozen they can be removed fron the trays and placed in Zip-lock freezer bags. From the freezer the pierogi cook for about 7-10 more minutes.
Thank you to Aidensmomma508 for sharing her recipe! And, I'm still collecting holiday recipes, so if you have a favorite, send it my way!
What are your family's food traditions during the holidays?