Last month I faced Iron Chef: Battle Potato by making gnocchi two ways – Gnocchi with Roast Chicken, Asparagus, and Sun-Dried Tomatoes in Pesto Cream Sauce, and Gnocchi Gratin with Spinach and Gorgonzola. (Yes, you can bake gnocchi. I was shocked, too.)
This month I again resisted my lazy urge to just make mashed potatoes and call it a day. Instead I adapted a recipe by Martha Stewart and made pierogi.
Making pierogi – making pierogi dough – was a natural progression in my breaducation. And really, how can you go wrong with stuffed dough? I love all filled dumplings – ravioli, tortellini, hand pies, won tons.
Stuff you like, wrapped in dough, then baked, boiled, steamed, or fried. Everybody wins.
Using just two parsnips along with the potatoes and leeks in the filling gave the adorable starch pillows the tiniest hint of earthy sweetness. And Martha’s pierogi dough is tender and silky. This one’s a keeper. I have a feeling I’ll be making a lot of pierogi this winter.
Recipe below the fold
Parsnip and Potato Pierogi
Adapted from Martha Stewart
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 tablespoons sour cream
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 1/2 pounds potatoes and parsnips, peeled and cut into chunks (I used two parsnips and the rest potatoes)
1/2 leek, cleaned and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
To make the pierogi dough, whisk together the egg, milk, sour cream, and 1/2 cup water. Stir in flour a little at a time until the dough comes together. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until it’s smooth and elastic, up to 10 minutes. Incorporate more flour if the dough is too sticky. Cover dough with plastic wrap, and allow it to rest for 1 hour.
To make the filling, place parsnips and potatoes in a medium saucepan, and cover with cold, salted water. Bring to a boil, and simmer until tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain, and put through a food mill to puree.
In a small sauté pan, cook leeks in butter until soft, stirring occasionally, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir the leeks and nutmeg into the parsnip and potato puree, and salt to taste. Remove from heat, and let cool slightly, then mix in parmesan cheese.
On a lightly floured board, roll out the dough to 1/8 inch. Cut out circles using a 3-inch biscuit cutter. Set the rounds aside on a floured tray. Place a round tablespoon of filling on each circle. Lightly wet edges, fold over, and seal by pinching.
[At this point, you can freeze the pierogi for future starchy dinner goodness. Lay them on a tray and freeze until firm, about 2 hours, then seal in a plastic bag and store in the freezer.]
When ready to serve, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add pierogi, and cook for 5 minutes after they float to the surface; drain. Brown in a small amount of butter.
You can also brown them in duck fat, and no one can stop you. No one!