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World Book Day Book Club April Recipe: Pierogies

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We bet if someone asked you your two favourite things you’d say books, and food. Us too!

At World Book Day, we love reading and we love snacking, so we’ve decided to combine the two things together to make our monthly Book Club even more fun.

Author Sharna Jackson has recommended her favourite reading snacks, inspired by her book High-Rise Mystery, our very first World Book Day Book Club title. Prawn cocktail crisps ranked highly, so grab a pack as we talk you through how to make Sharna’s other favourite book snack: pierogies.

HOW TO MAKE PIEROGIS

So… what ARE pierogies?! Pierogies are a delicious Polish dumpling, most often moon-shaped with a sweet or savoury filling, served boiled or fried. YUMMY. We’ve created a simple recipe for you to try out. If you like these we’d recommend you do some research to discover a fully authentic Polish recipe and make even more pierogies!

This recipe should suit a simple starter chef and will be extra fun if you work with a friend, family member, caregiver or teacher. Please make sure you always ask for help from an adult when using sharp or hot items.

The Ingredients

For the dough, you will need:

  • 250g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 6 tsp soured cream
  • 6 tsp water
  • ½ tsp salt

For the filling:

  • 2 potatoes, peeled and cut into pieces
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 125g half-fat cottage cheese
  • 6 tsp oil
  • 25g cheddar cheese, grated (optional)
  • 2 gherkins, finely chopped (optional)

Equipment:

  • Potato peeler or knife
  • Knife
  • Teaspoon
  • Two bowls
  • Sieve
  • A jug or cup
  • Potato masher or fork
  • 1 deep pan
  • 1 frying pan
  • Cling film or a clean tea towel
  • Rolling pin
  • A round cutter or guide to make circles
  • Tea towel or kitchen paper

The Method:

Step Picture
1.    Put the peeled and chopped potatoes in a pan of boiling water for approx. 20 minutes, until they are soft enough to mash. When cooked, drain the water and leave the potatoes to cool.

Please ask an adult to help you with this step.

 
2.    Now to make the dough. Sieve the flour into a bowl. Then in a jug, whisk together the other dough ingredients. Make a well in the flour and pour the wet ingredients into it. You can combine them using a fork or spoon or just use your hands! It will come together into a ball- if the dough is sticky add more flour into the mix.   
3.    Once you have a ball of dough, sprinkle the worktop or table with flour and knead the dough until smooth (it takes about five minutes).

Wrap in clingfilm and set aside for one hour.

4.    In a frying pan – heat oil and fry the chopped onion on a medium heat until it is brown and crispy – stir regularly while doing this.

Please ask an adult to help you with this step.

 
5.    In a bowl mix together the rest of your filling ingredients and set aside.  
6.    When the dough has rested and the potatoes are cool then you can get making!

Put the potatoes and onions in the bowl with the rest of your filling ingredients and, using a potato masher, mash the potatoes into the filling until smooth and the filling is well mixed.

7.    Flour your work surface again and roll the dough to approximately 3mm – use a ruler if you like! Cut out as many circles of dough as you can. Re-roll and repeat cutting until you have used all the dough. It will depend on the size of the cutter, but we made about 20 pierogies from this recipe.

Please ask an adult to help you with this step.

8.    Put a small dollop of filling onto each dough circle – think about the proportions of a fried egg white to yolk – you’ll need to wrap your dough around the filling.
9.    When you have filling on all your circles use a clean finger or pastry brush to line water around the edges of your circles. Then fold in half and squeeze the edges together – we did this with our fingers but you could use a fork.
10.  Pour clean water in the pan you used for your potatoes and bring to boil. When the water is boiling, add up to 4 pierogis into the pan. Wait for approximately 3 minutes – when they rise to the top they will be cooked. Fish them out using a slotted spoon, sieve or tea strainer and place on a clean tea towel or kitchen paper.  Cook in small batches until they are all done.

Please ask an adult to help you with this step.

11.  Your pierogis are delicious boiled, but we think they’re extra tasty crisped up in a frying pan. Heat a little bit of oil and place the pierogis in (depending on the size of the pan you might need to do this in batches). Fry for 2 minutes on each side until they are brown and crispy.

The finished pierogies are best enjoyed with a smoothie of your choice and a copy of High Rise Mystery ,while having an exciting discussion about the plot!

Please ask an adult to help you with this step.

 

 

#WorldBookDay
World Book Day is a charity funded by publishers and booksellers in the UK and Ireland.