Monday, April 1, 2013

A Small Lenten Feast and Vareneky Recipe

On Saturday, Andrey and I enjoyed a nice meal of leftovers with shrimp, quinoa, and red wine:
It was really a treat!  The wine and shrimp made all the difference :)  

On Sunday, we had a nice visit with some friends who visited from out of town and have a little boy just two months older than Liza.  The babies had fun playing together!
We like to tease that we'll arrange their marriage now so they won't have to worry about dating when they grow up.  It would be nice if it would work!

I made a loaf of bread yesterday using the same recipe as for the zhavoronky.  I added dried cherries as well as the orange zest.  It is so good!!!  The recipe as it is written makes two nice sized loaves.  I think it baked for about an hour (but I wasn't keeping track!).

Today I spent most of the day cooking with other ladies from church.  We try to get together about once a month and make food to sell as a fundraiser (mostly we sell to other parishioners).  Our parish has a retirement home that we are affiliated with right next door.  We make the food in their common room there so it's convenient for the ladies who live there to come and help.  We make things where many hands make the work a lot easier... such as pirozhky, pelmeni, and vareneky (pierogies).  Today we make two types of vareneky - some with potato/onion and some with potato/onion/mushroom.  The mushroom were most people's favorite (including me).  Here is our recipe:

Yield  = about 1000 vareneky (with four batches of dough)

4 large scoops (about 12-14 cups) flour
4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 cups warm water
6 tablespoons oil


  1. Mix the dry dough ingredients in the large mixer:  flour, salt, and baking powder. 
  2. Mix water and oil in a measuring cup. 
  3. Turn mixer on and slowly add wet ingredients to dry.
  4. After it’s all mixed, check to see if you need to add more flour.  It should be very soft, but not sticky.
  5. Make four batches of dough for the amount of filling listed below.

40 lbs potatoes, boiled and mashed
20 lbs onions, chopped and fried in vegetable oil
8 lbs mushrooms, chopped and fried in vegetable oil
Salt to taste

Mix potatoes and onions.  Separate half of the potato mixture and add mushrooms.

Put the dough through the pasta maker in small bits (about 1 cup) first at setting 1, then 3, then 5.  Cut circles with small cans.  Freeze on trays lined with wax paper or anti-stick parchment paper until they are ready to put into bags.

Sorry I don't have a better recipe for the home cook!  I think the proportions could be modified pretty easily, but I've never done that.  So, I guess posting this recipe is only good if someone wants to get a group of friends over to make them (and has the freezer space for them!).

We also make eggplant caviar and hummus.  These are all staples for Great Lent!  So, anyone in the Ottawa area, let me know if you want to purchase any for your lenten table :)

EDIT:  Just some notes about the vareneky, you could use a rolling pin to roll the dough.  The church sisterhood owns the Italian pasta maker which is great since the dough is a consistent height.  We use old vegetable cans to cut the circles (I think they are soup cans).  So, any round cutter about that size would work.  The proportions of dough to filling are hard to get since we aren't always consistent with the amount of filling each on gets since so many people are helping to do the job.  This dough recipe is the best Lenten (no egg) noodle dough I've found.


elizabeth said...

OH!!!! I miss Vareneky!!! yummmmmmmmm....

Wish I could be in Ottawa for some! Your blog is so wonderful to read - it's like a taste of home but of course I am in NJ so can't actual taste it... but you know what I mean!!!

Martha said...

Looks like a scrumptious feast, the shrimp and wine definitely add elegance!
Such a sweet picture of Liza and her beau. ♥
I will need to make those!!! I've made them a couple of times, but yours looks so nice, I think I just need to make them more often to get better at it. We're eating potatoes today, as Olivia has another cold grains or wheat.

Heather said...

Hello and nice to meet you! Oh, all this food sounds so yummy! I'm trying to get more adventurous with my cooking, and this recipe sounds like a good one to try!~

Vintage Jewelry Girl said...

The dough worked great! Thanks!