Zosia’s Pierogi

Boiled Pierogi
Of all the cooking that I do, I have a couple of recipes that are staples in the kitchen and really bring me back to my childhood. Growing up in a Polish-American family, pierogi were always one of the dishes that was served along any big event. For Christmas and Easter, they were there, and each year at the church festival, they were also there, golden and crispy on the outside, warm and gooey on the inside.

After my grandmother Zosia(Sophie)’s passing 6 years ago, no one in the family really had an interest in continuing the labor-intensive tradition of pierogi making. And then there was this weird little gay boy who liked getting dirty in the kitchen.

To celebrate my mother, the sheeny herself, coming for a DC visit, I decided to role out the cabbage-lined carpet and create a feast that would please even the frumpiest Stasho at the PLAV.

The centerpiece was a behemoth platter of pierogi. And in full disclosure, I have to confess, that in the heat of the day of cooking, I somehow managed to forget to take photos of much of the end results. Not sure how this happened exactly, but I’ll blame the wine.

Continue reading


Happy Paczki Day!

Happy Fat Tuesday to all, or as I grew up knowing it as, Paczki Day!

Boxes of Paczki

Yes, that's 16 paczki

Each year, my dear Polish relatives needed to find a way to use up all of the sugar, lard and butter in the house before lent started. To do this, they developed the paczek. A dense, fried doughnut stuffed with fruit, cream or anything else you can think up. The original mixture was prune, but then moved to raspberry jelly, custard, and all sorts of other fruits like lemon, blueberry, strawberry, cherry.

Like everything else in America, Paczki Day has been eaten up by Corporate America, and in midwest neighborhoods, you can find paczki at any Kroger, Meijer or other chain grocery store. But of course, just throwing an “authentic” label on the box doesn’t mean a whole lot. And frankly, they suck and are a waste of calories.
Continue reading