My latest Polish cookbook purchase is Wild Honey & Rye by Ren Behan, and I’m happy to say that the author and her publisher provided a complimentary copy that I was able to give away. Our lucky winner was Particia K. from Nebraska. Get your copy via the Amzon links in this post!
The author, a former attorney, grew up in England, the daughter of Polish parents. She writes beautifully about her love of good food and pride in her Polish heritage. Ren has taken Polish classics and put her own modern twist on them.
I don’t mean modern as in foams and molecular gastronomy. I mean the recipes, which are definitely Polish, reflect a modern, cosmopolitan nation with an interest in light, healthy eating with the freshest, seasonal produce and best proteins and grains. The color photos, which are my favorite part of any cookbook, are breathtaking!
If love this recipe and want to be sure you have a copy, you can purchase Wild Honey & Rye via one of my affiliate links on this page (which means that Amazon sends me a small commission). 🙂
Just to tempt you, we have a pierogi recipe from the book below!
Recipe from Wild Honey & Rye: Modern Polish Recipes © 2018 Ren Behan
PIEROGI WITH STRAWBERRIES, HONEY, AND PISTACHIOS
Makes about 20 pierogi
2¾ cups/12 oz/350 g all-purpose flour or “00” pasta flour, plus extra for dusting
1 whole egg, plus 1 egg yolk
1 tbsp confectioners’ sugar
½ cup/125 ml lukewarm water
1 tbsp vegetable oil
For the filling and topping
2½ cups/12 oz/350 g fresh strawberries, hulled, quartered if large, or halved, if small, or blueberries
2 tbsp unsalted butter
Scant ½ cup/100 ml clear honey
¾ cup/1 ¾ oz/50 g pistachios, finely chopped
In a large bowl, mix the flour, whole egg and yolk, confectioners’ sugar, warm water, and oil together.
Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for about 5 minutes until the dough is no longer sticky and feels smooth. Put the dough back into the bowl, cover with a damp dish towel or plastic wrap, and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
To fill: Divide the dough in half and keep one half covered with a damp dish towel to prevent it from drying out. Sprinkle your work surface with flour, then roll out the dough until it is about¼ in/3 mm thick.
Have a floured tray or board on hand. Using a pastry cutter or an inverted glass, cut out 3 in/8 cm circles of dough. Depending on the size of the strawberries, place a couple or a few pieces in the center of each circle. (If using blueberries, 2-3 blueberries will fit.) Fold the dough over to enclose the fruit. Using your thumb and finger, pinch the dough along the edge so that the pierogi is well sealed. Place each dumpling on the floured tray and cover with a damp dish towel while you make the rest.
To cook the pierogi: Bring a large pan of water to a boil. Carefully drop the dumplings in, a few at a time. They will sink at first, but will float up to the top when cooked-this will only take a minute or so.
Lift them out using a slotted spoon and place on a plate to cool. If you have sealed them well, none of the filling should have escaped!
Heat the butter in a large frying pan and gently fry the pierogi on both sides until slightly golden. To serve, drizzle with honey and sprinkle with chopped pistachio nuts.
CINNAMON WHIPPED CREAM
Serve this with blueberry-filled pierogi.
1 cup/250 ml heavy cream
1 tbsp confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
sugar or vanilla sugar, to sprinkle
Whisk the cream with the confectioners’ sugar and cinnamon until thickened.
Serve the warm pierogi with a sprinkling of sugar or vanilla sugar and a spoonful (or two) of the cinnamon whipped cream.