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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Piroshky

piroshky-1


About half a dozen years ago, when D and I were just spending a weekend in Seattle, we accidentally found ourselves near this teeny tiny little store called Piroshky, Piroshky at Pike Place Market. We wanted to just grab a couple of piroshkies for lunch and head out. But, boy did I have a hard time picking just one or two! We ended up buying about a dozen assorted ones and bringing it back home... The carrot, cabbage and potatoes Piroshky (Piroshki, Piroshky, or Pirozhki, aka Russian stuffed pastries) stuck in my mind.

Every time I looked up a piroshky recipe, the dough at a glance seemed to me like the calzone recipe (approximately, at least) and I wasn't sure if it would turn out as tasty as the ones I had from Piroshky, Piroshky, so, I just didn't really try it often. The first time was not a great success. I blame it on the oven :)

But, now that we have a newer oven, and I am getting the hang of using it correctly, this batch turned out quite good, if I may say so myself. I went with a simple potatoes, peas, carrots and cheese filling.

And, they make a wonderful snack hot or cold. One of these piroshkies for breakfast is incredibly filling and satisfying. They turned out soft and flaky, not dense and tough.

Piroshky can be fried or baked. I preferred to bake. And, it is definitely a weekend project for me - usually if it involves letting the dough rise, punch down, let it rise a second time, allow to rest, fill, shape and then bake, it has to be a weekend project for me... weeknights are just too short :)

The basic dough recipe is from Kaleenka Piroshky Recipe at Recipezaar. The quantity listed here made about 14 or 15 piroshkis of various shapes, before I ran out of filling, even though I was a bit conservative with the filling. So, I used the rest of the piroshky dough to make yummy stuffed naan.

Ingredients
dough:
4½ tsp dry rapid rise yeast
¼ cup warm water
4 cups flour (plus more for dusting, kneading)
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 egg
3 Tbsp additional vegetable oil
1½ cups milk

for the filling:

2 medium potatoes, peeled, cooked
2 medium carrots, cooked
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
salt to taste
1 Tbsp canola oil
some paprika powder, cayenne pepper powder, hint of nutmeg - or any of your favorite spices/herbs
plus, 15 or so 1-inch cubes of cheddar or colby cheese

Preparation
  1. Dough: In a glass or ceramic bowl, activate the yeast by dissolving it in the warm water; let it sit for about 10 minutes; combine the rest of the dough ingredients, then add the yeast mixture, knead well till sooth and elastic
  2. Leave in a warm place to rise; usually, I heat the oven to 175°F (as that is the lowest it would go) before I prepare the dough, and turn it off; then, I cover and leave the ceramic bowl with the dough to rise in the warm (but off) oven; especially in winters, it might take several hours even if left by the heating vent to have the dough rise till double in volume; then punch down and keep the dough handy
  3. Filling: Heat oil in a pan; add the peas and sauté ; mash the potatoes and carrots and add them in, plus the salt and spices; stir till well incorporated; set aside to cool a bit
  4. keep a greased or lined pan or cookie sheet handy
  5. Heat the oven to 350°F
  6. Shaping: I took liberties with shaping the dough - basically, rather than gathering up the edges and pinching to seal, I rolled the dough to 1/8" thick rounds, folded them over to a semi-circle and then cut the edges a bit to shape as seen in the picture; and, just for fun I shaped a few others into a longish hoagie-like shape :)
  7. Anyway, roll out the dough, add the filling plus one cube of cheese, seal and shape as desired; set aside in a microwave safe dish without smushing them together or overcrowding
  8. Warm them in a microwave for about 10-15 seconds and transfer to the greased cookie sheet and allow to rise for 10-15 minutes while working in batches; then brush the tops with some water if preferred
  9. Bake in 350°F oven for about 15-20 minutes till golden brown on top and cooked through


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5 Comments:

  • At 6:34 AM, Blogger A kitchen scientist & a white rat hubby!!! said…

    hi sheela, first time here..a real different collection of recipies u have here...

     
  • At 8:00 AM, Blogger bee said…

    yum yum yum. this may work with any bread dough. even leftoverpizza dough, methinks.

     
  • At 10:40 AM, Blogger Sheela said…

    welcome ks&wrh (sorry am too lazy to type it out) and thanks!

    bee, you are so right... almost all cultures have this dough-with-some-filling concept, either baked or fried, it seems like... the eggs in the dough bring an extra parameter to the equation, and i used to lean towards recipes with no eggs, but, this turned out almost as good as using a store-bought pastry dough...

     
  • At 10:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi,

    I am watching Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations show, and they had a segment about Piroshki Piroshki, the restaurant you mentioned. I thought the piroshkis looked good and decided to do a google search for a recipe, and voila' I found your recipe!
    Laura

     
  • At 9:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This looks like calzone, not like the piroshky at Piroshky Piroshky. I'm still looking for the right dough too. If you find it, please post it.

     

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