Delicious dumplings from Eastern Europe

By
Shauny Talbot
Added
27 July, 2016

Shauny Talbot tells us why Polish dumplings are the perfect winter comfort food.

There are certain things that can only be held as universal truths. One such truth is that all dumplings are delicious dumplings. While there is a focus on Oriental dumplings in this field, I believe that the humble, warming dumplings of Eastern Europe are the ideal winter’s meal.

Zuza Zak’s Polska features an entire chapter dedicated to these delightful, doughy bites. She introduces us to Poland’s many different types of dumplings and its inherent love of them. They are the chameleons of the Polish food world, changing in style according to their filling, texture and region. Whether as a side dish to a meal, a hearty addition to soup or a tasty snack, Zak’s mouth-watering dumplings will warm you up from the inside out.

Zak’s introduction to dumplings banishes the common misconception that all Polish dumplings are pierogi, clearly identifying several different types (each with their own occasions, seasons and charms). And although she generously provides us with separate recipes for the different doughs, she tells us to follow our inner “Polish housewife” and let the mixture dictate how much water or flour we add or how long we knead for.



Celebrate Christmas in July with these “little ears”, or uszka dumplings, traditionally eaten during the festive season in Poland. These tasty morsels are stuffed with wild mushrooms, sauerkraut and allspice berries, and served with borscht to make the clear, refined soup heartier.

For something that can stand-alone, try Zak’s crispy-baked pierogi filled with pork mince and pine nuts. These make for the perfect crunchy canapé or dinner party side.

And let’s not forget dessert. These 'lazy dumplings' have a dreamy melt-in-your-mouth texture and, as advertised, are as easy as pie sauce. Similar in style to ricotta gnocchi, once you’ve mastered the art of creating this delicate mixture you’ll be in sweet, sweet dumpling bliss.

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