Prepare to embark on a culinary journey to Eastern Europe with the comforting and irresistible Vareniki, a classic dish that warms the hearts and satisfies the appetites of many. These tender and flavorful potato dumplings have been cherished for generations, offering a perfect combination of simplicity, tradition, and downright deliciousness.
Originating from Ukraine and popular throughout Eastern Europe, Vareniki are the epitome of comfort food. The dough, delicately rolled out and folded around a savory potato filling, creates a delectable pouch bursting with flavor. Each bite reveals a creamy and seasoned potato mixture that is both comforting and satisfying, making Vareniki an ideal choice for a cozy family dinner or a gathering with friends.
The beauty of Vareniki lies in its versatility. They can be served as a main course, accompanied by a dollop of sour cream or a drizzle of melted butter, or they can be a delightful addition to a feast as a side dish. Whether you choose to boil, pan-fry, or even bake these dumplings, their deliciousness remains intact, allowing you to tailor the cooking method to your preferences and the occasion. My personal favorite is to add a good dollop of melted butter and then some of my chili oil.
Although Vareniki may appear intricate, preparing them is an enjoyable and rewarding experience. The dough, made with simple ingredients like flour, eggs, and water, is a pleasure to work with, rolling out smoothly and easily. The potato filling, consisting of mashed potatoes combined with cooked onion, aromatic herbs and spices, adds depth and richness to the dumplings, ensuring a burst of flavor with every bite.
With this recipe in your culinary arsenal, you can explore the traditional flavors of Eastern Europe from the comfort of your own kitchen. Invite your loved ones to gather around the table as you prepare a batch of Vareniki, sharing in the joy of creating a dish that connects generations and evokes memories of home. So, grab your apron and get ready to indulge in the warm embrace of these irresistible potato dumplings – a true embodiment of Eastern European comfort and culinary excellence.
Vareniki (Pierogi) Potato Dumplings
- 1 Dough mixer
- 1 Rolling Pin
- 5 Med Peeled Potatoes
- 1 Med Onion finely chopped
- 2 Tsp Salt
- 400 gr Flour
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 cup Water
Instruction Video (please like and subscribe)
- Chop potatoes into cubes, add salt, and boil till soft
- Chop onions and fry to a golden brown
- Once cooked, drain water from potatoes. Mash the potato. Do not add butter or milk as potato must be firm.
- Add onions to the mash and mix well so that they are evenly distributed.
- Set aside to cool while you make your dough.
- Add flour, salt, and water to your dough mixer and mix until smooth
- Hand knead into a ball and cover with clingwrap and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
Making The Dumplings
- Divide dough and roll into small circles as per the video at 6.45 minutes
- Add approximately 1 tsp of filling to the center of the circle of dough, fold over and pinch closed, I advise you to watch the video below for full details and technique.
- Lay the Vareniki out in trays ensuring that they do not touch each other.
Freezing for Future use
- Place in your freezer for 1 hour, Once frozen remove from trays and place in sealed plastic freezer bags. They can remain in your freezer for up to 3 months.
- Add water to a pot and bring to a rapid boil. Add 2 tsp salt
- Add the potato dumplings (fresh or frozen).
- Dumplings will sink to the bottom of the pot. Gently stir to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
- Once the dumplings begin to float, allow to boil for a further 3 minutes.
- Remove the dumplings. Add some butter to prevent them sticking to each other.
- Serve as required.
- Bona appetit!
Vareniki may be eaten plain, or with a sauce. My favorite is a tangy mustard while my husband loves adding his Addictive Chili Oil.