grandma cichoski's polsih pierogies

as easter approaches, i thought this would be a great time to share one of cory's family recipes.  his grandmother was polish, and on each and every easter her house was filled with an abundance of delicious tranditional polish recipes!  cory  has raved over her pierogies since i met him.  i've tried several times to make my own from other recipes, but (understandably) they've never compared to his grandmother's pierogies. 

the last time we were in michigan, cory's mom kindly shared her grandmother's pierogi recipe with me (the same recipe his grandma used).  i decided to whip up a batch recently.... and let me tell you, this is no small task.  you will be in the kitchen for at least a few hours and there are lots of dishes to clean afterwards, but they are totally worth it!  i put my own little spin on these, with the white cheddar and fresh thyme.  while i'm sure that no matter how hard i try, mine will always lack the loving touch of his sweet grandma... hopefully these are a close second.

grandma cichoski's polish pierogies:
yield: about 4 dozen pierogies


4 cups all-purpose flour
2 eggs
2 cups sour cream
2 large potatoes
1 cup extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
a pinch of fresh thyme
1 small yellow onion
*optional glass of red wine for the chef


peel potatoes and cut into 1-2 inch cubes.  boil until tender, then drain and allow to cool.  while potatoes are boiling, mix together flour, eggs and sour cream.  form into a large ball.  take sections of dough and roll onto a floured surface to approximately 1/8 inch thickness.  cut dough into circles (i used a glass with a 3 1/2 inch thick diameter).  after the potatoes have been drained and cooled, place them in a bowl and mash them with a potato masher, then mix in the cheese and thyme.  brush the rim of the inside of the dough circle with a bit of water (this helps the dough stick together), then fill the dough with a spoonful of the potato filling.  fold the dough over the filling, and pinch the ends.

after this step is completed and you have used all of the dough, you will notice you've made quite a few pierogies (about 48 to be exact).  if you're not up to the task of cooking all of these puppies up at this point, you can freeze whatever amount you are not going to use.  to do this, simply line a baking sheet with parchment paper, lay the pierogies out in a single layer, and pop in the freezer for about 30 minutes.  once the pierogies are frozen, place into a large ziplock bag in the freezer until ready to use.  (some recipes insist on blanching the pierogies before freezing them, but i didn't have any problems with boiling/cooking the frozen raw dough during later uses).

bring a large pot of water to a boil.  boil pierogies for about 5 minutes, or until they float to the top, then allow them to drain in a colander.  slice onions, and saut√© in butter over medium heat.  once the onions are softened, add the pierogies until they achieve a golden-brown color.  top with a dollop of sour cream, and enjoy! 

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