Pierogies

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RubyRose
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2003/05/28 12:25:11 (permalink)

Pierogies

Last week, we completed the 2nd two-day Pierogi-Thon, ending up with 600 dozen hand-made pierogies as one of the items for our church festival in June. They have a potato-cheese filling and will be sauteed in butter along with onions.

I'd never tasted pierogies until moving to this area in PA. Is this just a regional thing? They even have pierogies on the menu for school lunches here.
#1

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    kland01s
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/05/28 13:46:50 (permalink)
    You'll find pierogies in the Chicago area where there is a large Polish population. My local Jewel Foods has them in the frozen section.
    #2
    stanpnepa
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/05/28 14:24:59 (permalink)
    Ruby, here in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, the community highlight is the summer "bazaar" season where hundreds of churches/activity groups throw a two or three day party every weekend. You can get some amazing ethnic food from grape leaves (Greek) to Kibbi (Lebanese). However, the bulk of these events are Eastern European and Italian---plenty of unique pizzas and pastas, to piggies, haluski, potato pancakes and of course pierogies! For dessert, there's always something fried with sugar like funnel cakes and pizza fritas. Well worth the extra pounds!
    #3
    hawkeyejohn
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/05/28 14:48:50 (permalink)
    All you have to do is travel up and down Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago (known locally as Polish Broadway). They are in every restaurant and grocery store and deli. Good ones are outstanding and like everything else, bad ones are insufferable. Luckily, on Milwaukee Ave. there are no bad ones.
    #4
    jeffskal
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/05/28 21:29:31 (permalink)
    There used to be this small lunch place in Hollywood CA, right on Vine St., that had great Pierogies... this was back in the mid '70s though, long gone...

    My friend's Russian mother makes incredible ones (hmm, she lives in PA), and they pronounce it, "Pirro-shKEE"
    #5
    pigface
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/05/28 22:14:54 (permalink)
    Christmas Eve is Pierogi time in our family ... And my wife's family
    Orginated around Johnstown, PA.
    Potato Cheese is the traditional favorite .... But,
    Sweet cabbage (Browned in butter)
    Prune (Stewed, My favorite)
    Kraut (Again, browned in butter with onion & Caraway)
    And Farmers Cheese (Wife's favorite)
    we make several batches of dough, the above filling the week before Christmas,
    Freeze 'em until Christmas Eve, when they're poached (Not boiled, it will break them up)
    and then sauted in More Butter and sweated Onions.
    Serve them with the Dollop of Sour Cream. Not found on any Heart Healthy Menu.
    Once a year is usually enough.
    When My wife went through a Culinary Program, she made Perogies with Mushroom Duxelle.
    Those were good Perogies along side a Duck Breast. Not Roadfood Criteria, but Yummy
    #6
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/05/29 05:54:40 (permalink)
    I have a friend in Cleveland, OH who is Polish. He wanted me to experience the real ethnic culinary event. He took me to his mothers house and she made pierogi's stuff with many different things. She stuffed them with cheese, potato's sausage (maybe kielbasa) and she had cabbages.

    I certainly appreciated them and enjoyed them

    Paul E.Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #7
    pdxeats
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/09/04 07:09:33 (permalink)
    Here in Pittsburgh they are very popular
    people here go to the Bloomfield bridge tavern (famous for em)
    to eat em
    Check it out if your ever in town!!
    take care!!

    Bloomfield Bridge Tavern
    4412 Liberty Ave
    Pittsburgh, PA 15224
    Phone: (412) 682-8611
    #8
    jessicazee
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/09/05 19:41:56 (permalink)
    Saw pierogi first in the freezer section as a teenager...after moving to Milwaukee I discovered Polonez, a Polish restaurant that had great pierogi. I make them myself a few times a year, always the potato & onion filling. My mom would saute them in butter with bacon & more onions, and of course lots of sour cream.

    I recently stumbled across A&J Polish deli on Milwaukee's south side...they carry frozen pierogi from a place in Chicago...there's cherry, mushroom, sauerkraut, etc. etc. but I especially love the sweet cheese. God I love pierogi.
    #9
    lleechef
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/09/07 05:08:17 (permalink)
    Growing up in the Pittsburgh area we had pierogi all the time, especially when the churches, Serbian Orthodox or Russian Orthodox or Polish had their festivals. The ladies would make pierogi for days, filled with kraut, mashed potato or cheese and of course swimming in butter and onions. Mother hated them since she came from an Italian family and of course preferred ravioli or gnocchi.......I ate enough carbs growing up to last a lifetime!
    #10
    Lovie
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/01 00:13:47 (permalink)
    Growing up In Winnipeg Manitoba a great hub for eastern European imagrants, we would have perogie day a couple of times a year. My aunts would come over and they would make enough perogies to fill up all of the surfises in the kithcn and dinning room. They woud sit there and pinch the little dough pockets together for hours. After every one my mother would put together my Aunt Ada would repinch the seam. Those were heavenly pockets of dough, mostly made with cheese onion and potato. The deseart perogies had bluberies in them. My brother's mother in law made perogies for Christmas eve called gulumpkies with dried porchini mushrooms in a clear vegtable broth for the meatless supper before mass. Those were devine indeed. When perogi day died out as we all grew up we started to get our perogies from an onion domed eastern orthodox church we named the perogy chuch because once a month the babuska clad Omas of the congragation would gather in the basement and have there comunal version of perogy day and make thousands of little tender dough envelopes.
    I don't know if any still exists but there used to be Hunky Bills Perogy stands in various parts of Canada. The Hunky part of Bill's name was contraversal as it was short for the term Bohunk which is a pagorative term for eastern europeans manily Ukranians I believe. He himself was Ukranian.

    Does any know of perogy's cousin the perushki? It also has virous fillings but the dough is a yeast baked bun type. My favorie of these are sourcrout but they come in saugage and potato as well as cheese and potato. Excellent with Boarst.
    #11
    redtressed
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/01 05:37:32 (permalink)
    Another flilling for pierogie I used frequently is a kasha pilaf filling(buckwheat groats). Involves savories such as onions, garlic, mushrooms, and assorted spices.

    Another cousin of the pierogie is a Russian lovely known as pelmeni. A siberian peasant speciality for many centuries, the pelmeni was prepared in huge batches and then wrapped and stored out in the snow banks in the winter for convienience. The pelmeni is a meat stuffed wonder. I do my filling with ground chuck and ground pork mixed, browned in bacon grease, minced onions,garlic, pepper,marjoram and dillweed, and some beef broth....simmer until the broth is reduced to a very thick gravy glazing. It's then mounded onto a very tender pierogi dough and sealed, added to apot of beef broth to cook until they float, then removed, drained and added to a skillet of melted butter to brown a bit. Arrange them on a plate and serve with sour cream and sprinkled dill weed over them. I make huge batches usually in November after butchering season and then keep in the freezer takng several out as I need them.
    #12
    Willly
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/01 08:17:52 (permalink)
    My in-laws, who are of Ukranian descent, serve pierogies on Christmas Eve and other days when meat it not allowed. They also tend to serve them at big family get-togethers. There's the basic potato/farmers' cheese, and the saurkraut with carraway, but my favorite is the dried apricot and prune. The first two are alway covered with butter and lightly browned died onions, the thsweet pierogi just with melted butter.
    #13
    Kristi S.
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/01 08:18:43 (permalink)
    Ruby, I am a former Clevelander who also lived in Allentown for a time. When I was a kid in Ohio pierogies were very "hot" due to the large Polish population there. My folks used to boil them, but I prefer them fried. I think the boiling method is big around the Lehigh Valley (PA) area. I just bought a box of Mrs T's yesterday and they are always a hit at home with the kids (and the husband, who is an Allentonian).
    #14
    Hiram Callahan
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/01 10:38:29 (permalink)
    I started eating pierogy as a teenager, in the home of my best friend, who had a Polish mother and an Armenian father. Mrs. T's were about all I had ever had until I started hanging out in the East Village of New York City a few years ago. Briefly, before the East Village became Bohemian in the 60s or so, it was home to a large Ukranian and Polish community some of whose institutions (and restaurants!) survive.

    Of these, the most well-known are Veselka, which has yuppified itself considerably, and Odessa, which very much hasn't.

    Two places somewhat less likely to be crowded, but just as likely to please the pierogy palate, are the Neptune and Little Poland. Both offer a wide variety of pierogy: potato, potato/cheese, sweet cheese, sauerkraut, meat, kasha, sweet potato, spinach/mushroom, etc., all available either boiled or fried. My recollection is that at each place an order of seven is about $6. I think that Neptune theoretically serves them with either applesauce or sour cream, but I don't remeber being charged extra after getting both. Little Poland seves them with fried onions--truly superlative--but charges $.50 each for the sour cream and applesauce.

    Neptune is on the east side of First Avenue, on one side or the other of 12th Street. The food is good--I especially love the potato dumplings--but the best thing about it is that it has a back yard, set up essentially as a Polish beer garden with Zywiec beer benches and similar trappings.

    My favorite for food is Little Poland, on the east side of Second Avenue. For the Sterns: while Little Poland doesn't claim to be the home or originator of anything, its menu does invoke a comparison along the lines of "Our food is like music of Chopin." For the pierogy lover, it also offers pierogy in special sauce (very heavy!) and, in summer, fruit pierogy. Little Poland also has excellent soups, and great dinner specials. Meat (meatballs, lamb shank, kielbasa, a massive slice of stuffed breast of veal) and two veg (kasha; red, sweet, or sour cabbage; cucumber salad; buttered noodles; etc.) are as little as seven or eight dollars, and easily leave over enough for a second dinner. The great bargain, though, is breakfast. If you get there by 11:59 a.m.--and I've had my waitress check her watch!--you get two eggs, any way except shirred; kasha, with gravy and those fried onions; toast; your choice of juice; and coffee or tea for only $2.95. Add ham, bacon, sausage, or corned beef hash, and it's $3.95. The real blowout, a length of kielbasa, grilled and split, makes it $4.50. For an extra $.35, ask for the challah, and get two slices of deep-yellow toast an inch thick, served with butter, honey, and marmalade. I think I'm going to have breakfast there tomorrow, as writing about it is making me crazy, in that good way.
    #15
    DanaJ
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/19 17:42:25 (permalink)
    I'm polish adn pierogies are a common thing in this house.
    I have made them from scratch, but it is time consuming, but so worth it.
    Mrs T's and other store brands are pretty gross to us. However, there is one brand that is quite good, called Georgio's.
    Usually when I make them from scratch, they're filled with potatoes, onions, and cheese. Some use saurkraut and a variety of other ingredients.
    #16
    aimala66
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/20 13:08:41 (permalink)
    has anyone ever had the displeasure of having pierogies deep fried? i've had then served this way at bars....it's really bad. pierogies should be boiled and then lightly sauteed in butter with some onions (or green onions)

    mmmm....i may have to go get some tonight.

    don't know if it's a detriot thing, but dudek brand is pretty good for the grocery store variety. mrs. t's are pretty generic. but i suppose it's like eating frozen pizza...you have to just accet that it's not going to be all that.
    #17
    DanaJ
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/21 15:30:44 (permalink)
    I agree- pierogies aren't the best when fried.
    We've always boiled them, then lightly sauteed them in butter with a lot of onions. Served with sour cream on the side(optional).

    #18
    oldfrt
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/23 17:39:58 (permalink)
    What a great site! My FIRST post!

    Grew up on the North side of Chicago and had Ukranian grandparents. My grandmother taught me how to make Perogi when I was barely able to reach the knobs on the stove. Had to be late 40's. She made the capusta (Kraut) ones and potatoes and cheese. I learned how to make the dough also. All boiled and fried with bacon and onions. Sour cream piled on the plate next to them. Wow. No Air Conditioning in those days and the top of the three flat ended up like a steam bath in the kitchen. My Gramp's would sit at the kitchen table and sweat while he ate them. We loved them and my Dad would, a couple times a month, stop over at Gram's and pick up a bowl or two for all of us to make at home.

    My boys and I still make them the same way. We get the old production line going and usually crank out 50-60 for a Sunday dinner. Still the kraut and potatoe ones. Same 60 year old formula.

    We live in CO now but make it back to Chicago a lot. Our favorite place to stop is Sak's Restaurant and Bar on the corner of Damen and Chicago Ave. The old Uke neighborhood. Small restaurant in the back of the bar but the perogi are to "die for" and the Borscht soup is the best in the world with sour cream on top and dill.

    I also agree with another post here that Milwaukee Ave is the Main Street for Polish food in Chicago. The small deli's along there have the best in the world along with great home made sausages (kielbasa) and deserts. All neighborhood joints but that is where they are the best.

    Mr "T"'s are lousy! (Spoiled I guess)

    Don
    Castle Rock, Colorado
    #19
    kdiammond
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    RE: Pierogies 2003/10/23 19:55:05 (permalink)
    This is probably heresy, but here goes. My grandma was from the Ukraine in Russia and lived in NYC and she made her pierogy baked. So I prefer them baked. She made a cheese and saurkraut version that I particularly favor. I now have a neighbor from Russia and her pierogy are baked as well (hers are a pot cheese and sauteed onion). That is not to say that I dislike poached or pan fried pierogy, but the baked is preferable.
    #20
    ScreenBear
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/18 21:21:10 (permalink)
    Need some little Pierogies.
    For a recipe I'm contemplating, I'd like some potato-filled pierogies about the size of tortellini. I think such a thing exists.

    If I'm not mistaken, a nationality, other than the Polish, make these for a certain celebration. Would appreciate any input.
    The Bear
    #21
    linus
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/18 21:25:37 (permalink)
    They are huge in Cleveland, Ohio. For best enjoyment, simmer them for a few minutes in salted water, drain very well, then fry in a mixture of oil and butter, so the butter doesn't burn.
    serve with sour cream and applesauce. The filling most popular here is potato and cheese. They are the good stuff!
    #22
    MilwFoodlovers
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/18 21:40:13 (permalink)
    A few years back I remember an infomercial touting a ravioli maker. The details escape me but I'll bet they would make some dynamite cheese and shroom filled pierogie's.
    #23
    Z66 Butch
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/18 22:01:09 (permalink)
    The frozen ones were on sale at a local supermarket. After reading about them here I gave them a try. We bought the potato and cheese and also the potato, cheese and broccoli. They were OK but a little bland for my taste. I bet homemade ones are much better.

    Butch
    #24
    buckeye1
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/19 18:15:49 (permalink)
    The PIErogi PALace in Cleveland's West Side Market has over 100 different types of pierogi fillings. A lot are traditional, some not so much (tuna melt pierogi, taco meat) I'm pretty sure my Polish grandma would not approve of these. They have a website at www.piepal.com

    Personally I like the Sophie's Choice or Janka brands found in the supermarkets in Cleveland. The ones from the West Side Market are big quarter pound pierogies and too doughy for my taste.
    #25
    Top
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/19 18:36:57 (permalink)
    I like 'kraut and mushroom myself.
    My kids will eat all the potato and onion and cheese pierogies I can make.
    Top
    #26
    Greyghost
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    RE: Pierogies 2005/12/19 18:43:44 (permalink)
    Has anyone tried sauted pierogies with leeks instead of onions? Seems like a natural to me. I've got to try it.
    #27
    Kenny da Fat Man
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    RE: Pierogies 2006/02/24 13:31:18 (permalink)
    Ruby:

    As you can see from the other Pittsburghers that posted, pierogies are very popular in this area. I now get them locally from one place only: Pierogies Plus!

    IMHO they are BETTER than the local churches because practice makes perfect, and they make a zillion of these a day - all by hand.

    They are authentic, handmade pierogies. This place is fantastic, they sell pierogies, Haluski, stuffed cabbage, kielbasa, etc. They have pierogies with fruit filling, meat filling, potato combinations, cabbage combinations, even the traditional lekvor filled pierogies. (I personally love the hot sausage poerogies). They will even sell you a "homemade" DVD on how to make pierogies!

    They have mail order for you folks far away!

    Try it: www.pierogiesplus.com
    #28
    wanderingjew
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    RE: Pierogies 2006/02/24 14:00:05 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Kenny da Fat Man

    Ruby:

    As you can see from the other Pittsburghers that posted, pierogies are very popular in this area. I now get them locally from one place only: Pierogies Plus!

    IMHO they are BETTER than the local churches because practice makes perfect, and they make a zillion of these a day - all by hand.

    They are authentic, handmade pierogies. This place is fantastic, they sell pierogies, Haluski, stuffed cabbage, kielbasa, etc. They have pierogies with fruit filling, meat filling, potato combinations, cabbage combinations, even the traditional lekvor filled pierogies. (I personally love the hot sausage poerogies). They will even sell you a "homemade" DVD on how to make pierogies!

    They have mail order for you folks far away!

    Try it: www.pierogiesplus.com


    I completely agree with your thoughts about Pierogies Plus.
    I spent 5 years in Pittsburgh and frequented the place from beginning to end.
    Pittsburgh is one of the few cities that takes pride in its traditional local and ethnic cuisine and doesn't try to sweep it under the rug in shame and try to replace it with nuevo asian and latin cuisine like many other cities are doing in order to hasten the death of regional roadfood.
    #29
    ScreenBear
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    RE: Pierogies 2006/02/24 21:39:29 (permalink)
    I'm looking for a very small pierogi for a recipe I have in mind...something I want to put together.

    Ideally, the pierogi, which should be potato-filled, would be about the size of a tortellini. Any help out there?
    The Bear
    #30
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