Thursday, April 14, 2011

STEW FAIR tomorrow!


Making perogies at midnight last Monday. Why not?!

Apple fruit leather isn't the only homecooked local food coming out of the BaltimoreDIY kitchen this week to support some friends of mine. (Note the jars piled up in the background before drying!)

This Friday night is STEW FAIR, a Baltimore community dinner where organizations get to speak about their projects. All proceeds from the dinner support the presenting organizations. See the website for more details.

When coming up with a project for STEW, I looked around at my pantry. Dried mushrooms, pickled beets, and green onions were all on hand and accessible in reasonably large quantities to feed a crowd.

The big idea was to make pierogies so that the food could be held by hand. The filling mixture was a mix of the beets, mushrooms, and green onions. Here's a photo of the filling with the dough in mid-knead:


More instructions on how to knead pasta dough are posted in the "BaltimoreDIY Makes Pasta" post. See recipe for the dough below.

The nice thing is that you can't over knead pasta dough! Push the dough away with the heel of your hand, then pull the dough back into a ball and repeat. Every so often, fold the dough into thirds and then roll flat (as shown in photo above.)


In the end, it took me about three hours to make 44 pierogie! So there's no way I could make enough to serve 150 people at STEW FAIR.

So instead I baked four loaves of sourdough, to be served with the mushrooms, green onions, and beets as a kind of early spring bruschetta. Phew!

In any case, here's the recipe I used for the pierogies. I finally finished filling them at 12:30 a.m., so I have yet to cook and eat them! Can't wait to let you know how they taste.

Pierogie Dough

3 cups flour
3 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
1/4 melted butter
2 tsp salt

Mix salt into flour on the counter. Make a hollow in the middle of your flour pile and fill with eggs. Slowly mix flour into the eggs a little at a time. See photo above.

Knead dough 10 minutes, then roll as thin as possible.

Filling

Finely mince green onion and pickled red beets. Keep in separate bowls.

Simmer dried shitaake mushrooms in water and a little soy or worcestershire sauce. Turn off heat and soak for ten minutes. Cut off stems and mince. Reserve liquid.

Saute cooked mushrooms in butter on medium heat. After 5 minutes, add a splash of the mushroom liquid and simmer back down until filling is nearly dry. Turn off heat.

Mix in pickled beets and green onion.

Cut pierogie dough into circles.

Fill with a teaspoon of filling and crimp edges with a fork.

The pierogies can be frozen at this point, boiled in salty water and served with melted butter, or fried in butter.

A million thanks to my gardening partner Cheryl for being a great sous chef! You will be re-paid with buttery deliciousness.

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