I freaking love this week. The busy, excited, anticipatory few days before Thanksgiving make it one of the best weeks of the year, don’t you think?
I am a huge fan of anything requiring lots of organization, and so naturally, Thanksgiving dinner aligns perfectly with my type-A personality.
It’s an epic meal, no matter what your traditions may be. Our family Thanksgivings tend to be on the more traditional end of things, with maybe one or two wild card dishes thrown in. But generally, we rarely stray from the usual meal. Why mess with a good thing?
The sides are what totally do me in. I can’t get enough of the stuffing, butter rolls, gravy, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, or copious amounts of roasted or braised or mashed veggies. The turkey is great, too, but it’s definitely an afterthought for me. I’m alllll about those side carbs, baby.
Oh, and the dessert. Duh.
And while many people complain about them, the Thanksgiving leftovers are just as exciting to me. Not only do I adore the flavors of Thanksgiving and want to enjoy them for weeks afterward, but I also love coming up with new ways to enjoy them in the post-foodmageddon phase. Infusing them with more life, giving them a poke and a prod into something new and fun. I just love it.
So, with that said, I give you this year’s Thanksgiving leftovers idea: pierogi!
Guys, I am a huuuuge pierogi fan. Always have been. I love cheese and potato ones best, fried in butter with onions and dipped in cool, tangy sour cream. I think they may be one of the best dough-wrapped packages out there. Carbs and cheese wrapped in carbs? I mean, c’mon, it’s an obvious choice.
And while I certainly don’t claim to be an expert in making them (this was my first time!), and while I don’t have a drop of Polish blood in me, I was pleasantly surprised at how easily these came together. I gotta admit: I was certainly intimidated by the prospect of making my own pierogi dough, let alone assembling and cooking them successfully.
But I think it’s safe to say that I WAS successful. Much to my joy and shock.
The thing is, pierogi dough is REALLY easy to work with. Like, even easier than pizza dough. DEFINITELY easier than pastry dough or pie crust (*shudders*), which is just not my strong suit. It comes together with ingredients you likely already have on hand, requires very little work (like, 5 minutes of kneading), and is so soft and elastic and EASY to roll out.
Again, I was pleasantly surprised.
When it comes to the filling for these pierogi, you can go nuts. I went with mashed potatoes, turkey, cranberry sauce, a little onion, and cheese. But you could load these up with stuffing, mashed sweet potatoes, veggies, whatever your heart desires! Just make sure to add a little cheese to your filling for that creamy, gooey effect. It totally makes them.
The filled and formed pierogi get boiled in some salted water and then crisped up in some butter. Easy peasy! I served mine with a mustard sour cream because I am a brine freak and can never get enough of that vinegary tang, especially with fried or heavier foods.
What I love most about these Thanksgiving leftovers pierogi is how unexpected they are. It’s definitely a far cry from the turkey sandwich or turkey-and-potato hash that we so often find ourselves eating on Black Friday. It’s a fun and different twist, while still tasting like Thanksgiving.
Basically, it’s the best of all worlds.Print
For the Dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup full-fat yogurt
1 large egg
Egg wash, for sealing
For the Filling:
1½ cups leftover mashed potatoes, chilled
½ cup cooked turkey meat, shredded or chopped
¼ cup very finely diced or grated onion
3 tablespoons cranberry sauce
1½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
For the Dipping Sauce:
½ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon whole grain mustard
Salt and pepper, to taste
Butter, for the pan
Dried cranberries, for serving
Chopped parsley or chives, for serving
For the Dough:
- Make the dough by mixing the flour and salt together in a mixing bowl.
- Add the yogurt, melted butter, and egg to another bowl and whisk to combine.
- Pour the yogurt mixture into the flour and stir until a ball of dough forms.
- Place the dough on the counter or a cutting board and knead it for a minute or so with damp hands until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough back in the mixing bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rest for 30 minutes.
For the Filling:
In a bowl, mix together the potatoes, turkey, onion, cranberry sauce, and cheese until combined. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
For the Dipping Sauce:
Whisk together the ingredients and season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Set aside until you are ready to serve.
To Assemble & Cook:
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
- After the dough has rested, roll it out on a lightly floured surface until it is ¼-inch thick. Using a three-inch biscuit cutter or glass, cut out circles of dough.
- Place roughly 2 teaspoons of the filling in the center of each dough circle. Brush the edges with egg wash and then fold the dough over the filling, sealing the edges with your fingers. I like to press the edges together with the prongs of a fork to ensure that they are really sealed well.
- Set formed pierogi on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper.
- Continue until all the pierogi are formed.
- Boil the pierogi, in batches, in the water for about 2 minutes or until they float to the top. Remove with a slotted spoon and return to the sheet tray.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add a couple tablespoons of butter.
- Once the butter is melted, add the pierogi, in batches of 6-8, to the pan. Cook until crispy and golden, about 2-3 minutes per side.
Garnish the warm buttery pierogi with cranberries and herbs. Drizzle any remaining butter in the pan over the pierogi. Serve immediately with the dipping sauce on the side.
- I find that these pierogi taste best if eaten immediately. If you are not planning to eat them all in one sitting, store formed but unboiled pierogi in the fridge, covered well. They’ll last a day or two. You can also freeze them for several months. Boil and fry in butter when you are ready to enjoy them.
- Category: appetizers
Keywords: homemade pierogi, thanksgiving leftovers, thanksgiving leftover pierogi, turkey and potato pierogi