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VARENYKY (Ukrainian Dumplings)

varennyky
[ CLICK TO ENLARGE ]

Dough:

Mix 4 cups flour with 2 tsp. salt.  Add 2 eggs and 1 1/3 cup of cool water.  Knead lightly and cover with a kitchen towel.  Place aside.

Fillings:

POTATO:

Mash 8 large cooked potatoes.  Add 2 large chopped onions, which have been sauteed in butter or vegetable oil.  Season with pepper and salt.

CHEESE:

Mix 4 cups farmer cheese, 8oz cream cheese, 2 eggs and salt to taste.  You can add a little sour cream if the mixture is too dry.

SAUERKRAUT:

Rinse off 3 lbs. of sauerkraut with hot water to remove the salt.  rinse with cold water and squeeze till dry.  Chop very fine.  Sautee 2 large onions in butter or vegetable oil and add the sauerkraut.  Sautee in a covered pan for 10 minutes. Season to taste.  Let cool.

Potato and Cheese
1 tablespoon finely chopped mild onion
2 cups of cold mashed potatoes
1 to 1 1/8 cup of cottage cheese
2 tbs. butter
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the finely chopped onion along with the butter until it is opaque and tender. Remove from heat and add the potatoes and cheese. Season to taste with pepper and salt. Fill the varenyky.

Mushroom
1 finely chopped small mild onion
2 to 3 tbs. butter
2 cups chopped cooked mushrooms (Ukrainians prefer Boletus mushrooms, usually available dried on strings or in cups in any Ukrainian specialty store such as "Surma" in NYC)
2 egg yokes
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the onion along with the butter until it is opaque and tender. Add in the mushrooms and cook together for about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove from the stove and beat in the egg yolks. Cool the mixture thoroughly before filling the varenyky. Chopped dill may also be added for some extra flavor if desired.

Meat or Fish
2 cups ground meat or fish
1 tbs. grated onion
2 tbs. butter
salt and pepper to taste
brown mushroom gravy or cream sauce
1 beaten egg yoke

This is a recipe that best utilizes leftover meat or fish from the previous day. Prepare the meat or fish by grinding it. Cook the onion in the butter until it is soft and tender, and add it to the meat or fish. Moisten (but do not drown) the mixture with the gravy or cream sauce or the egg yolk, and add salt and pepper to taste. Once the mixture has cooled, fill the varenyky with it. Chopped dill can also be added here if desired.

Fruit
2 cups of any fruit such as pitted sweet cherries, pitted plums, any fruit in season, stewed pitted plums, or even a thick jam
sugar
ground cinnamon
flour

If you are going to use fresh berries such as cherries, sweeten the fruit to taste with sugar or cinnamon. If you are using pitted plums, fill them with some sugar and cinnamon as well. Add a sprinkling of flour to thicken the juices that will appear when the varenyky are filled with the fruit mixture. The flour will prevent the juices from leaking out. Once you have cooked the fruit-filled varenyky, sprinkle them with sugar and browned buttered crumbs, or use a quality sour cream with them.
 

To Form the Varenyky:

1. Roll the dough thin.  Cut rounds with a cookie cutter or the open side of a water glass.

2. Holding the round in your hand, place a spoonful of the filling in the center and fold in half.

3. Press the edges to seal.

4. Lay on a dry kitchen towel and cover.

Cooking the Varenyky:

1. Boil a large pot of water and drop them in a few at a time.

2. Boil rapidly for about 4 minutes. (they should have risen to the top).

3. Place them into a collander and rinse with hot water and drain

5. Place onto a plate and coat with either melted butter, sauteed onions with bacon, or a dollop of sour cream on the side.

5. Invite 4 of your best friends and ENJOY!!!!!


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Updated June 1, 2008 - LS


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