Pierogi with sauerkraut and mushrooms are my absolute favorite kind of pierogi. You can serve them with bits of pan-fried bacon or fried in just butter. Pierogi is already plural, so no need to add an "s" at the end (the singular form of the word is "pieróg"). Although time-consuming, the results are well worth it! Here is my recipe for traditional polish sauerkraut and mushroom pierogi--enjoy!
Makes about 80 pierogi.
about 4 oz. dried mushrooms
4.5 cups sauerkraut
1 carrot, peeled
3 tbsp olive oil
3 small white onions, diced
salt and pepper
2.5 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1.75 cups boiling water
3.5 tbsp butter
3 white onions, diced
3-4 strips of bacon, chopped into small pieces (optional)
3 tbsp olive oil
Making the Filling:
Rinse the mushrooms, place in a pot and fill the pot with cold water so that the water covers the mushrooms. Leave for 6 hours or overnight. After at least 6 hours, bring the mushrooms with the water to a boil, along with the carrot and parsley and cook until the carrot is soft. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Completely drain the mushrooms, carrot and parsley (you can use the drained water for a base for mushroom soup).
Drain sauerkraut and place in a pot with enough water to cover. Cook for about 45 minutes, or until sauerkraut is soft. Completely drain sauerkraut and add it to the mushroom mixture.
Grind the mushrooms, carrot, parsley and sauerkraut in a meat grinder or process in a food processor (make sure you don't puree or process to fine). If using a grinder, use one with large openings, about 1 cm in diameter.
Fry the diced onion in a frying pan with olive oil. When it is translucent, add it to the filling mixture. Mix the mixture well, adding salt and pepper to taste.
Making the Dough:
Sift flour into a bowl and add salt. Add butter to the boiling water, mixing it to melt. Gradually add the melted butter/water mixture to the flour and mix until well combined. Place dough on floured surface. Knead dough about 10 minutes until soft and smooth. Place back in the bowl, cover and let sit for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, divide dough into 4 equal parts. Roll out one part onto a floured surface until about 1/16 inch in thickness. Take a glass that is about 3.5 to 4 inches in diameter and cut out circles in the dough with the mouth of the glass. Fill the centers of the circles with 1 heaping tablespoon of filling. Fold dough in half over the filling and crimp the edge with your fingertips to form a tight seal. Repeat this process with the remaining dough, placing filled and crimped pierogi on a lightly floured baking sheet or plate so they do not stick.
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Place 5-6 pierogi in the boiling water using a slotted spoon or spatula. Cook over medium heat for about 3 to 4 minutes, until pierogi float to the surface. Stir gently and often as you cook so that they don't stick to the bottom. Serve hot with fried onions or bacon.
Pierogi freeze very well--let pierogi cool to room temperature before placing in the freezer. To reheat refrigerated pierogi, pan fry in oil or butter until golden brown. Serve with onions or bacon. Smacznego (Enjoy)!