Monday, December 9, 2013

Potato Pierogies with Bacon Caramelized Onions and Cheddar Cheese

Well hello everyone and happy Monday!  So sorry for my extended absence.  It has been a very busy few weeks here and I'm just now starting to feel like I am somewhat caught up.  Plus, it has been getting dark here at like what... four o'clock in the afternoon?!?! Which pretty much makes it impossible for me to get any decent pictures of the food I make.  So it looks like I will be cramming in most of my recipes for this blog into the weekends.

I know if you are reading this and you are from Cleveland, you most definitely have had a pierogi before. When we lived in Florida, so many people I spoke with looked at me like I had three heads when I asked them if they had ever had a pierogi.   Cleveland is like a big melting pot with tons of pockets of different ethnic groups. Italian, Serbian, Greek and Polish people all have their traditional style of cooking but this dish belongs to my Polish friends.

Are any of you taking a few vacation days over the holidays?  If so, that is the perfect time to make some pierogies because they are quite a labor of love. You can fill them with whatever you want but I chose to fill them with potato, bacon, caramelized onions and cheddar cheese.  They are out of this world good.  Grab a friend or family member, get some wine and make a night of it!

Mix the dry ingredients together then form a well

Add the wet ingredients to the well then gently beat the eggs in with a fork

Pull the flour down from the sides to mix the dough

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface

Knead for a few minutes to form a smooth ball of dough.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge until it is time to roll it out.

Time to make the filling.  First, peel the potatoes.  I despise peeling potatoes...

It's important to chop them into similar size pieces so they cook evenly.  Cover with cold water, bring to a boil, and cook until soft.

While the potatoes are boiling, prepare the rest of the filling.  First brown the bacon, remove and drain on a paper towel lined plate.  Leave some of the grease and brown bits in the pan.

Chop the onion and caramelize in the bacon pan

Grate the cheese

Drain the potatoes and put them through a ricer.  No worries if you don't have a ricer.  A potato masher will work just fine.

Add the bacon, onions, cheese and cream to the potatoes and mix until combined

Beat the eggs and water to make an egg wash

Remove the dough from the fridge, turn out onto a floured surface and slice into four even pieces.

This is one quarter of the dough.  Roll it out until it is about 1/4 inch thick.  Keep moving, flipping and adding flour so it doesn't stick.

I used a mug to cut out the circles

Place one tablespoon of the potato mixture in the center of each round and brush one side with egg wash

Fold over and press the edges together to seal

Place the pierogies on a sheet pan lined with wax paper and sprinkled with flour.  If you don't plan on eating the right away, place the sheet pan in the freezer to save for later.  Once frozen, transfer to a ziploc bag.

Bring a pot of water to a boil.  In a separate pan, add butter and onions and cook over medium heat.

Once the pierogies float to the top they are done .  Immediately transfer to butter and onions and cook until slightly browned.

Potato Pierogies with Bacon Caramelized Onions and Cheddar Cheese
3 3/4 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon chives, chopped
1 1/2 cups sour cream
2 eggs
6 tablespoons butter, melted

In a large bowl, mix flour, salt and chives together.  Form a well in the center.  Add sour cream, eggs and butter to the center.  Lightly beat eggs into the wet ingredients.  Gradually incorporate flour in from the sides and mix until a dough forms.  Pour out onto a floured surface and knead for a few minutes to form a smooth, elastic dough.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you are ready to roll it out.

4 pounds potatoes ( I used a mix of russet and yukon gold)
1 onion, diced
4 slices bacon, chopped
4 ounces cheddar cheese, grated
1/3 cup cream
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Peel potatoes and cut into large chunks that are all around the same size.  Place in a pot and add a generous pinch of salt.  Cover with cold water and bring to a boil.  Boil for about 30 minutes or until a knife inserted into a piece pulls out with no resistance.  Drain potatoes and let cool for ten minutes.

While potatoes are cooking/cooling, chop bacon and brown up in a large saute pan.  Remove bacon, place on a paper towel lined plate and leave fat in pan.  Add diced onion to pan with reserved grease and season with a large pinch of salt.  Cook for about 10 minutes until caramelized.  Grate cheese.

Run potatoes through a potato ricer into a large bowl.  If you don't have a ricer, just use a potato masher. Add crumbled bacon, caramelized onions, cheese, cream, salt and pepper and mix until combined.

1 egg
2 tablespoons water
6 tablespoons butter
1/4 onion, minced

Remove dough from refrigerator and cut into 4 pieces.  Lightly flour your rolling surface.  Roll dough out until it is about 1/4 inch thick.  Keep moving and flipping the dough, adding more flour on the surface to make sure it doesn't stick.

Crack the egg in a small bowl and beat in water with a fork.  With a cookie cutter or rim of a glass, cut out circles.  Place one tablespoon of filling in the center of the round.  Brush one side with egg wash, fold over and seal.  As pierogies are made, place on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and sprinkled with flour.  Once pierogies are all made, you can freeze them to make the later or boil them to eat them right away.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil while simultaneously heating butter and onion over medium heat.  Put pierogies in the boiling water and once they float, they are finished.  Remove them from the water and immediately transfer to butter and onions.  Cook until slightly browned and garnish with some fresh parsley.


  1. I've never had pierogies, and only recently learned what they are. There's a food truck in Indianapolis that specializes in them that I've been wanting to hunt down ... they sound SO good!

    1. Carbs rolled up in more carbs and cooked butter and onions... what's not to love? But seriously.. they are so good. Let me know what you think when you hunt that truck down!


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