My Mother's Cooking: Pierogi Filled With Cottage Cheese and Chives
My Mother's Cooking
Pierogi With Cottage Cheese and Chives
Pierogi was one of the meatless meals that my mother made for Friday night suppers back when Catholics still abstained from eating meat on Fridays. Most other pierogi that I have read about or tasted are usually filled with mashed potatoes with cheese or onions. Other common fillings include sauerkraut, mushrooms, fried cabbage, meat, or some type of fruit.
My mother never used any of those fillings. Instead, she used a mixture of dry cottage cheese and chives bound together with a beaten egg.
The key to this recipe is that you must use small curd, dry cottage cheese. If you use creamed cottage cheese, the pierogi will leak and fall apart. You could probably also use feta cheese, but I have never tried it. Fresh chives are also a must. We used to grow them in our garden, so we had fresh chives all summer.
Once the pierogi were boiled and drained, my mother would fry them in butter until they were golden brown much like in the pictures that I have included. She usually added some chopped green onions to the pan if she had them to provide both color and flavor.
Preparation Time: 60 Minutes
Cooking Time: 60 Minutes
- 4 cups of flour (approximately)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs for the dough
- 1 bunch of fresh chives, chopped
- 16 ounces of small curd dry cottage cheese
- 1 egg for the filling
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 ounces of butter for frying the boiled pierogi
- Chopped scallions for frying (optional)
- Place the flour in a large bowl and form a depression in the middle.
- Beat the eggs with the salt and pour them in the depression.
- Mix the contents to form a soft ball of dough. You can add a little water to make the dough slightly sticky like bread dough.
- Let the dough rest while you prepare the filling by mixing the cottage cheese, chopped chives and a beaten egg with salt and pepper.
- Roll out the dough to about 1/8 inch thick on a well floured table and cut approximately 4-inch circles using an empty 32-ounce can with the lid completely removed.
- Fill each circle of dough with an ice cream scoop full of filling and fold them over to form stuffed semi-circles.
- Be certain to seal the edges all of the way around using a fork to press down.
- If the dough is a little dry, you can brush a little water around the edges to help them seal.
- Drop each pierogi one at a time into gently boiling water, stirring occasionally with a slotted spoon to prevent them from sticking. Cook more than one batch if necessary.
- The pierogi are fully cooked after they float to the surface and remain there for about 5 minutes.
- Drain the pierogi and rinse them briefly with cold water to keep them from sticking together.
To Finish Cooking the Pierogi
Fry them in batches in butter in a large skillet turning them over with a slotted spoon so that they will brown on both sides.
I like to add coarsely chopped scallions while frying the pierogi to add color and to give them a double dose of flavor. We normally ate them simply with a green vegetable or a salad on the side