Monday, April 4, 2011

Mrs. T's Pierogies

I've been going to a local pub lately with some friends on a regular basis, and one of their menu items is a basket of pierogies.  Eating them reminded me of how awesome they were, so I started grabbing them from the freezer section.

There is a variety of, well, varieties to choose from.  Most of which, to no surprise, Giant doesn't carry.  I've had a few of them, but generally any of them should be good as long as you like whatever's in them.

They can be cooked a bunch of different ways.  You can boil them, bake them, fry them (and "sauteĆ©" is just a fancy word for "fry"), and even use a contact grill (like the George Foreman ones).  The way I recommend making them is frying them, but for convenience's sake, baking them is the way to go.

The directions for any method of cooking are simple and low on the bullshit I usually complain about.  The oven directions do tell you to flip them, but here it makes sense as they brown more evenly that way, for a more aesthetically pleasing snack.

A word of advice when boiling them: Adding frozen pierogies to boiling water can cause the pierogies to crack, and then you get to clean potato out of your pot.  Even though they tell you to do precisely that, I'd recommend putting them in the water before boiling it.  As an added bonus it'll knock a bit of time off of the cooking time.

The method I use for frying them is slightly different from the method listed on the box, but produces delicious results nonetheless.  Instead of using oil, I use a low-fat butter substitute (to be specific, Brummel & Brown).  The only real change, aside from continually having to add more of the butter substitute, is that you'll need to preheat the skillet with nothing in it (or with some drops of water so you can tell when it's warm).  Then it's just the rhythm of "flip pierogies, add more butter spread, wait" until they're golden brown.

They suggest frying them with sliced up onions, and indeed that's the way they're served at the pub we go to.  So if you want to go that extra mile and get an onion to slice up, there you go.  If you'd rather not bother with that, onion powder will suffice.  Add it just before flipping the first and second times, and you're good to go.

Depending on how you cook them, cleanup can be annoying just due to the number of dishes.  This is why I recommend baking them if all you're after is convenience.  That way you can just use aluminum foil and you'll only have to wash a plate.

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