Pelmeni (Russian Dumplings)
Makes 8-10 dozen
*Recipe adapted from ‘A Taste of Russia’ by Darra Goldstein. These dumplings are simple, savory goodness. They pair very nicely with fruity Grenache. This recipe makes a lot but you’ll be glad to have this many, they freeze very well too.
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 whole eggs
¼ cup warm water
1 ½ lbs ground beef and pork, mixed
1 medium onion
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) butter, melted
Fresh chopped dill for garnish
Russian-style mustard (optional)
Strong Vinegar (optional)
Sour Cream (optional)
- To make the dough, mix together flour and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the center and pour in the eggs and water. Toss together, then knead by hand until the dough holds together. (Alternatively you can do this with a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook.) Form the dough into a ball and place it on waxed paper or a floured surface. Cover the dough with an overturned bowl and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.
- To make the filling: In a food processor, grind the meats, onion, salt and pepper very finely until there is a smooth mass with no lumps. Set aside to ‘season’ while the dough is resting.
- Divide the dough into four pieces. Working with one piece at a time, roll the dough out onto a floured board as thinly as possible (1/16 inch thick or less) and with a cookie cutter or a glass cut out 2-inch rounds. Place a heaping teaspoon of meat filling on each round. Bring one edge of the round over to meet the other and seal the edges tightly, forming a half moon. Then take the two pointed edges and bring them together in the center of the half moon, along its straight edge. Lift those edges slightly so that a round ball is formed. Make sure the edges are securely pressed together at the center. As each ball is formed, place it on a clean dish towel.
- If you are not going to bowl the pelmeni right away, cover them with a dish towel so that they don’t dry out. When ready to serve bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add a little vegetable oil to keep them from sticking. When the water is at a rolling boil, drop the dumplings in and boil them gently for about 5 minutes or until they rise to the top. Make sure not to overcrowd, cook in batches if needed. Drain pelmeni and immediately pour the melted butter over them and garnish with dill. Serve with optional garnishes.