Saturday, September 21, 2013

Sauerkraut and Mushroom Pierogi # Vegan MoFo

Pierogi (dumplings) are a great go-to-meal when traveling through Europe. Most are made with vegan friendly ingredients and range in a variety of fillings such as mashed potatoes, sauerkraut, mushrooms, blueberries and so forth.

While the list of possible fillings is almost infinite, I recommend to use as a filling whatever you have on hand at home. Once you have the dough recipe mastered, use left overs or vegetables, and you have a simple, cheap meal. Isn't life wonderful with pierogis in tow?


Sauerkraut and mushroom pierogi. 
Ingredients (Makes about 30 pierogi)
2.5 cups all-purpose flour, plus additional for dusting
1 cup hot water (not boiling water)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of nutmeg (optional)

1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup dried bolete mushrooms (or dried mushrooms of choice), reconstituted 
1 (31-oz jar) sauerkraut (about 4 cups)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Make the filling a day ahead to make things easier on yourself. If that is not possible, begin making pierogi by preparing the filling first. Boil plenty of water in a tea kettle, place dried mushrooms in a medium bowl, and pour the boiling water over the dried mushrooms. Be sure to cover them completely and set aside for about 15-20 minutes.

Mushrooms, reconstituting in water. 
In the meantime, preheat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, add oil and sauerkraut with their juices. Season with salt and pepper and continue sautéing until all the juices have evaporated, for about 10 minutes.

By now, the mushrooms should be ready. Drain and be sure to save the liquid, you will need it to flavor the sauerkraut. Chop the mushrooms into small pieces, I use kitchen scissors for this task, and add them to the sauerkraut. Add about 1/4 cup of mushroom water at a time to the sauerkraut, and continue sautéing for another 15-20 minutes. Keep adding more mushroom water, as needed, to prevent from sticking to the skillet.

Turn off the heat, taste for seasoning, and set aside.

This is what the filling looks like. 
Now, make the dough. In a large bowl add 2 cups of flour, salt, oil, nutmeg and water. I microwaved a cup of water for 40 seconds. Mix gently, and add the remaining 1/2 cup of flour. Knead the dough for about 2 minutes, and set aside for about 10 minutes.

Bring a large pot of water to boil to cook the pierogi. Dust work surface with plenty of flour, divide the dough into 2 parts, and roll out each one to a flat, thin pancake. The dough will be sticky, so have additional flour handy. Use a large cup or cover from a mason jar, like I did, to shape the pierogi.

Gently lift the surrounding dough around the shaped pierogi, and set aside. Add about 1 tablespoon of filling in the middle, fold the ends together, pinch with a fork to seal the pierogi. Do the same with the other half of the dough.

Place the pierogi in the boiling pot of water, about 5-6 at a time, and remove with a slotted spoon as soon as they float on top. This should take a minute or so, do not leave the pierogi boiling once they flow to the top, or they will fall apart.

To serve, pan fry in olive oil, and top with sautéed mushrooms or onion. Traditionally, these are served with sautéed onion.

Do not over-knead the dough or it will be too elastic, and you won't be able to roll it out.

Keep extra flour handy when rolling and shaping pierogi as the dough will be sticky, especially when your kitchen is warm. Use a fork to gently lift the shaped pierogi from the work surface, don't worry about perfection.

Be sure to seal the pierogi well to prevent from filling escaping during cooking. I keep a glass of water and dip my fingers, if necessary, to seal the dough if too dry. Fork is a great tool for sealing too.

Lastly, have a helper handy to make this activity as fun as possible. If a helper is not available, I recommend a glass of wine or beer. If that is not available, recruit a furry friend to keep you company.


  1. What a nice post! Thanks for sharing your recipe; I definitely need to try making some soon. My grandfather always made great pierogi & he had such a variety of fillings that he would use! The blueberry ones were especially fun! :)

  2. I am so glad you enjoyed the post Julie. I also have great memories eating and making pierogi with my family :)

  3. These look great! I can't wait to try the sauerkraut and mushroom filling once I figure out a gluten-free pierogi dough! :D

  4. There are many recipes out there for gluten-free pierogi dough, and I hope that you can find one that you are comfortable with. I have never experimented with gluten-free dough for pierogi, but I hope to do it soon. Good luck in your search and let me know what you find :)

  5. Hello fellow Vegan Mofo'er :-)

    Love your "Sauerkraut and mushroom pierogi" and would like to link to your recipe on the Vegan Mofo round up post on my blog this Friday.
    Nice to meet you btw.

    P.S. Connect with me on Facebook (CandidaDietPlan), @candidadiettips on Twitter and Sandra Boehner on Pinterest so you see when the post goes live ;-)

  6. Sounds great! Thank you for including me :)