April 25, 2006

Russian Pelmeni

After a tiring night out with my housemates last night, I woke fairly late this morning and decided- since its a public holiday and all, ill invite a guest over for lunch. My friend -Artem is from Canada but of Ukrainian roots and being away from home for so long; he has missed his mom's yummy Russian dishes. I felt a little awkward at first as I myself have never eaten Russian food, and today....I'm MAKING it! One of his favourite dishes is Pelmeni. Click here for a full definition of what that is, basically; its a dumpling. I suppose as Russia is a neighboring country of China, the culinary diversity eventually spread; and we somehow have similar dumplings made by Chinese people called 'Gau ji' click here for a picture. The only difference is, chives and different spices are added into the filling to give it a Chinese taste. Wrapping the Pelmeni reminded me of my childhood days, when I used to help my mom and aunts wrap wan ton's with similar dough. Here is the recipe for Pelmeni; try it! ....I personally loved it and Artem said it was very similar the original Russian Pelmini from stores. It was a LOT of work! My forehead was damp with sweat, kneading half of this recipe! Making a silky thin skin of dough and flavouring the meat on your own definitely beats the ready made ones and it's definitely more satisfying.
2 cups plain flour and a little more for flouring the surface and your hands
1 cup milk
1 ts salt
1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 Large egg
*Mix and knead until combined , it may seem a very sticky at first and unworkable but it will eventually look right, as you knead it on the floured surface, knead it and mix it about with a fork or knife if u must (like I have done in the picture). Knead until it becomes fairly smooth and elastic. This takes a LONG time....dont give in half way through, it isn't like kneading pastry dough. Roll it out and cut out little circles. Fill the pelmeni, pinch the corners to make sure the meat is 'locked' in. Make sure there aren't holes in them, as the water can dry up the meat inside. Tip: put lots of flour in between them when you stack them on one another; they tend to stick.

500 minced pork or 250 pork+250 beef (combination is up to you)
1 onion diced
salt and pepper

*Grind all filling ingredients and add about 2 tbsps of milk to moisten the meat.

I made 2 variations of the Pelmini.

1. Boil in 1 litre of boiling stock+salted water for about 10 minutes, depending on the size of your dumplings. They will float up when they are cooked. Serve with sour cream/vinegar/ a big dollop of butter (for authentic Russian-style-Pelmeni)
2. I cooked a second batch Japanese Gyoza style on a frying pan. Add oil to to coat the pan, shallow fry bottom of Pelmeni's till they turn golden. Lower heat, add 4 tbsp's water mixed with 1 tsp stock powder into the pan (it will sizzle) and quickly cover to let the steam cook the rest of the Pelmeni. Remove when they are cooked through. - I liked this version better, as it had a nice crisp bottom! Not as healthy though.
*hidden in this photo above, is a 'Malaysian-looking-pelmeni, spot the CurryPuff Pelmeni ;)

My friends and I were so excited to try the Pelmini's that we forgot to take a picture of the cooked batches! :(


Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

Hey ally! My mom has been doing some advertising huh? *blush* haha nice to see you drop a message! I dont think my food will still be good after its been shipped all the way there...but i can eat some on your behalf ;) hehehe

Amadeo said...

Great blog! My favorite way to eat pelmeni is with sour cream, soy sauce, and dill weed. Yum!!

Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

thanks anna :)

Anonymous said...

I love Pelmeni, my boyf is Moldovan which is close to Russia and introduced me to these and they have been a fave since.
Have you tried Vareniki with potato and onion in side? Its delicious!

Great Blog!

Anonymous said...

Nice Blog. Keep posting more


Anonymous said...

Very nice blog! My favorite way to eat pelmeni is with sour cream, soy sauce, and dill weed.

Anonymous said...

I like Russian Pelmeni.Its good testy.Thanks...

Anonymous said...

Great blog.Thanks for sharing..

ukraine women said...

Hhhmmm, it's yummy!!! Thanks for sharing. Got to go and eat Pelmeni now.

russian food said...

I've tried your way yesterday, it's really delicious as well. You can check out my recipe as well

AmyS said...

I have never tried Russian food before. This sounds delicious though and it's making me hungry!