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- Archive for June, 2012 -

Reuben Perogy


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I have not had a reuben sandwich in ages! My husband ordered a reuben sandwich at the Enjoy Centre not long ago and he had no choice but to share. My mouth is watering as I am writing this entry; the flavour of the sauerkraut and hot smoked meat together, the heat from the mustard and sweetness of the sauce came together deliciously!

I began to conjure up ideas for a perogy recipe. Let’s just get into it, shall we?

A traditional reuben is made up of rye bread, a filling of sauerkraut, caraway seeds, smoked meat or corned beef, swiss cheese and a thousand island sauce or Russian sauce, a sauce with a base of mayo, ketchup and horseradish. There are variations on the Russian sauce and I made a basic sauce using what I had in the fridge. I did not add caraway seeds because I do not like them at all. My late great Babcia would flavour her sweet sauerkraut dishes and beef stews with the seed and I would always pick out each and every little seed. Yes it did leave behind the seed flavour but I could not stand to bite into the actual seed! The meat I used was a smoked kielbasa that I purchased from a local Polish deli shop known as Hunter sausage.

I decided to bake the perogy to be able to hold the filling in and have the texture of rye sandwich bread.

Rye Perogy Dough

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup rye flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. melted butter
  • 1 egg with a little water for the egg wash
Reuben filling
  • 1 round link of smoked kielbasa, diced
  • 3 cups store bought jar of sauerkraut, chopped
  • 1/2 onion, chopped very fine
  • 150ml of beer ( i used a lager that we had on hand, but a darker ale might be a better choice to add more depth and flavour. With the lager, once cooked down with the filling the flavour was reminiscent of white wine, which could also be used in place of beer)
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • slices of swiss cheese (slices will be placed on perogy dough, upon which the filling will be added; I just used a marble cheese that I had on hand; swiss cheese will add much more flavour; maybe a smoked gouda can be added in future?)
Russian Sauce
  • 2 tbsp mayo
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tbsp sweet chili sauce
  • salt and pepper
  • creamed horseradish; I used a roasted beet and horseradish sauce that I had made at Easter time. In Polish it is called cwikla (pron. ch-vee-kwa). Goes great with meat sandwiches and on hard boiled eggs.
1. Mix all dough dry ingredients in bowl.
2. Mix all wet ingredients for dough in separate bowl, adding to dry mix. Mix with hands or let your mixer do the work for you!
3. Turn out dough on floured surface and knead until dough is soft. Cover and let rest while the filling is made.
4. Saute onion and sausage together in pan until lightly browned. No need to add oil as the fat from the sausage will help cook the onions and meat together.
5. Add sauerkraut and beer, cooking on med-low heat. Add some fresh cracked pepper for seasoning. Cook until most of beer is absorbed, about 10-15 minutes.
6. Let filling cool. In the meantime make the russian sauce as a side and at this time set the oven for 350F.
7. For the sauce, mix all ingredients together and refrigerate.
8. When filling cooled, begin to roll out your perogy dough until about 3mm in thickness. I used a 3.5″ diameter glass/cookie cutter this time.
9. Place a slice of cheese on the dough circle, followed by 2 tbsp of filling.
10. Continue to bring together the dough like a taco and pinch the sides to form your perogy.
11. Place on parchment paper on baking sheet. Paint some egg wash on each perogy and puncture with fork. At this point, if caraway seeds are up your alley go ahead and sprinkle some on.
12. Bake for about 12 minutes, flipping over halfway to get both sides nicely browned.
13. Serve with the homemade russian sauce and a side of dill pickles.And a glass of beer.
Just a side note, the filling for this recipe can also be used as a main or side dish alone. Add some chopped tomatoes, tomato paste, bacon, beef cubes, peppercorns, and potatoes and you have yourself a typical rustic Polish dish known as Bigos (pron. bee-gos). I love my bigos, especially in the winter, around a fire or at home with family and friends, served with a thick slice of rye or sourdough bread and a beer. My mom makes huge batches a few times a year and shares the wealth. Quick and easy, makes lots and freezes really well!

A hearty perogy


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In our "backyard" - Fish Creek Park


This is a much delayed entry, originally started in January of this year. Better late than never!

This is a vegan friendly recipe in that it does not contain any eggs nor dairy products in the dough recipe, nor in the filling. This recipe was inspired by a friend of ours who is a strict vegan and has been for nearly two decades. He was visiting us last summer and at times it was challenging to either cook a vegan friendly meal or look for restaurants that would accommodate this diet. However, the search proved to be enlightening and fun, discovering either new ingredients or replacements and discovering restaurants to experience. By the way, the Buddha’s Veggie vegan friendly dry-ribs are deee-licous!

Flax seed gel is what replaces the egg and I first came across it in a recipe book entitled Health by Chocolate by Victoria Laine. I used her recipe for the flax gel and the dough turned out so soft and so easy to work with! Not too sticky and not too dry or tough. Just right. Definetely a little grainier when cooked but I did roll out the dough a little thinner so as not to have too thick and heavy dough but still strong enough to hold the contents inside.

The filling was fruit of my labour. Last summer I had a chance to visit and take part in some u-pickin’ at The Saskatoon Berry Farm south of Calgary. The ¬†further we got into the orchard, the bigger and juicier the berries got! I am still using the berries to this day for various recipes! Definitely will return this July/August for some more scrumptious berries.

No pics to share but the recipe is easy to follow and make!

Vegan Perogy Dough:

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • flax gel (replaces one egg): 1 tbsp ground flax seed mixed in 3 tbsp. warm water
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp. oil (use canola, safflower, sunflower or vegetable oil. Olive oil can have too strong a flavour for the dough)
Saskatoon Berry filling
  • 3 cups saskatoon berries
  • 1 tbsp cane sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla seeds or 1/2 tsp. vanilla seed paste
1. Mix the flax seed and water together; let sit for 10 minutes to soften. Then use a whisk or fork to beat the mixture until becomes lighter in colour and smooth.
2. Wash and dry the berries. Mix all berry filling ingredients and let sit while you prepare the dough, gently stirring every so often. Can also be prepared night before.
3. Place flour and salt in large bowl.
4. Mix water, oil and flax seed gel together. Add to flour mix.
5. Work with hands or mixer to make dough.
6. Turn out on floured surface and knead lightly until you get a soft dough. Let rest 10 minutes.
7. Roll out dough until 1/8” in thickness.
8. Use a glass/cookie cutter 2.5″ in diameter to make perogy cutouts.
9. Add 2 tsp. worth of berries in the middle of dough and pinch around to form a perogy.
10. Cook on med heat in boiling water for 2-3 minutes or until perogies begin to float.
11. Serve hot with soy vanilla yogurt or plain soy yogurt with a little maple syrup drizzle!


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