Bubba is Polish for Grandma. My Bubba was my Grampap’s mother. She made homemade pierogis every week for the entire family, and extended family!
I loved my Bubba. She was a petit firecracker of a woman. She loved to play games, her favorite was Yahtzee – and she cheated at every game!
Bubba’s Traditional Polish Pierogi
Makes about 8 dozen. Can be made ahead and frozen.
8 to 10 potatoes
1 onion, finely chopped
6 tbsp margarine or butter
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
salt and pepper
Peel and cut potatoes into cubes. Boil until tender. Reserve cooking water for dough. (aha! That’s why we had you make the filling first!)
Meanwhile, saute onion in butter, set aside to cool.
Mash potatoes, add onion with butter, cheeses, season to taste and mix well. Set aside.
This is our family’s traditional filling. In the old country you just used whatever cheese was around the house. If you had cows, you made fresh homemade soft cheese. If you happened to have goats in the backyard, you’ll use goat cheese. You can also use cottage cheese, or even sauerkraut in your mashed potatoes.
2 1/4 cups reserved potato water, cooled to lukewarm
6 T veg. oil
6 to 7 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 t salt
Combine potato water, eggs and oil; mix well.
In a very large bowl, combine flour and salt. Make a well in the center. Pour water/egg mixture into well and stir until mixture is smooth.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead several times.
Place dough in well greased bowl, turning once, and cover. Let rest for at least 20 minutes, 2 hours is better.
On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out to about 1/8 inch thickness. Cut dough into circles with a jelly glass.
Place dough circle in the palm of the left hand. Plop a teaspoon of potato filling into the center of the dough circle. Fold one half over the potato mixture and pinch the open edges together. Experienced Bubbas do this with a little twist. Be sure they are tightly sealed or the filling will ooze out during the boiling.
IF YOU ARE FREEZING SOME FOR LATER: Place on baking sheets lined with wax paper. Once frozen, place in a large zipper-style plastic bag to store in freezer.
COOKING: First bring a large cooking pot of water to boil. Cook pierogis in batches of 6 in boiling water. They are done when they rise to the surface.
Then fry them in butter and onions until golden.
Serve with a generous dollop of sour cream.