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Basic cooking - Perogies sticking to pan? help!

post #1 of 9
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I know this is like very basic stuff! But i just cook at home for when im hungry/bored :chef:

Anyways, on the weekend i boiled perogies (Frozen [i know, should have made fresh ones :blush:]), and after It was done boiling, and rinsed it and everything and then in another pan (non stick) i put olive oil and i put it on medium/medium high heat... and then i put the perogies in it

anyways, the perogies stuck to the bottom of the pan, and i tried moving them around but they just kept sticking to the bottom and i had to take them out and put them in a non stick pan.. and yeah, it was a pain cleaning the other one, because peices of the perogie were burnt to the bottom of the pan :( :lol:

so what should I do nextime so they dont stick to a regular pan
post #2 of 9

Frozen perogies yummy

I love the frozen perogies! I cook them frozen right from the package with butter and sliced onions. We love to have them a bit on the more cooked and chewy side.( we all like the crunchies on top of the baked ziti too) I just slice a medium/large onion, 1/2 stick butter. and a box of the perogies on medium low heat and turn them with the onions to get a nice carmelized look and taste. We serve them with sour cream and or apple sauce. This cooking method takes about 30 minutes or so, so start that right off before the rest of your dinner and they will be perfect. No boiling first. And if they are left over, it's ik. They will not last too long in our house.:)
post #3 of 9
The reason your pierogies stuck is because they were wet and because you tried to move them before the bottoms were fully crisped and released from the pan surface.

Forming a bond with a smooth surface is something food with a lot of starch or protein on the surface does. And, moisture makes it worse. You created quite a hurdle for yourself by steaming the pierogies first. The best method for dealing with frozen piergoies is either to fry or boil, and not steam or boil first.

You can cook them frozen or defrosted. If frying you'll have better luck with defrosted dumplings. But ... you CAN cook them frozen. You can even boil or steam them -- but you've got to do more than partially dry them. You'll have to dust them with flour or other starch to get a completely dry surface.

To fry, start by preheating the pan at medium high heat. Then add either a tsp or so oil and a 2 or 3 tbs of butter, or about 2 tbs of oil (for a 10" pan). Reduce the heat to medium low. When the butter foam subsides, or the oil is heated add the pierogies to the pan without crowding them. The oil in the pan will immediately cool and the pierogies will stick. Allow the bottoms to fully cook before shaking the pan, four or five minutes. The pierogies should release by themselves, so you can easily turn them.

If some do not, turn those that do and allow the stickers some more time. After another minute try shaking the pan again. If some still don't release, try another 30 seconds and some more shaking. Next, try tapping the stickers on the side with your spatula, rather than digging underneath them. Finally, do your best to dig under the the stickers with your thinnest, sharpest spatula -- preferably a slotted, flexible, fish turner.

Remove, drain and serve with melted butter seasoned with dill, marjoram or tarragon, and/or sour cream. If you fried with butter, you can season the butter while the pierogies drain, and serve them in the cooking butter.

Except for the low heat used for the dumpling skins here, this general technique of waiting for the food to release -- rather than trying to turn it early -- is typical of most hot pan technique -- whether saute or sear. Waiting for the release is one of the most important techniques any cook can learn. Even more important, and difficult for many people to assimilate, is the larger idea of allowing the food to cook to a given point without interfering. It's one small part of "respecting the ingredients" chefs talk so much about.

I disagree with KissTC to the extent that dumplings may be pan fried in oil and often are. However, I don't quite get the whole pierogies in olive oil thing. Doesn't seem like it would be a good combination at first blush. But I wasn't there to taste. How were they?

A different method of cooking pierogies is simply to steam or boil them and forget frying them altogether. Serve in a little melted butter with sour cream on the side.

Hope this helps,
BDL
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post #4 of 9
I have had this happen to me with both pierogies, tortollinni, and ravioli. BDL is correct they must be dry. Most frozen pierogies are pre cooked, simply thaw on paper towels and saute. I spray with a dash of vege pan spray also. I prefer butter, onion and sour cream. with a drop of heavy cream (a la smitane style) Have not had problem this way.
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post #5 of 9
I've used an enamel-coated, cast-iron pan with butter. They will brown nicely over a low-medium heat. Put a piece of foil over the pan to expedite cooking time
post #6 of 9
Well before cooking you can defroze it in a tray with a cloth on the bottom so that you can dry out the perogies, make sure the pan is hot or in other way you can blench the perogies from frozen in boiling water, before you fry in a pan.
You also can try making it from fresh it is much more better then frozen and usually it is surve with gravy , by the way beside cooking it in a pan you also can deep fry it, it is much more better and crisp.
post #7 of 9
Yes, fat is the answer. Butter works the best--margarine has too much water and olive oil is definitely not Polish. My family has been making perogies from scratch for over 60 years. My mother learned from her mother who was from Poland. So yes indeed, fat is the answer.
post #8 of 9
Fat may be the answer but not to the question asked. Which, if I may be allowed to rephrase slightly, was, "Why would "fat" prevent sticking better than oil?" I put "fat" in "quotes," because when frying, vegetable oil is often referred to as "fat." Which, from a "chemistry" standpoint it is. (Quotes are a hard "habit" to break, no?)

As I understand it, Kiss TC made an assertion about technique which flies in the face of most professionals' (and ex-professionals') experience. Remember, the question is not about pierogie specifically, but about frying dough generally. My understanding and experience are that butter does not make pierogies any less sticky than oil -- and that the techniques for keeping them from sticking are independent of the choice of "fat" over oil.

For what it's worth, I agree with you about butter being by far the best fat for frying pierogies. The agreement is largely based on a belief that butter used for frying serves as the basis for the best sauce. I either like to get a little flour on the surface of the pierogie to thicken the butter, or, if the pierogie are very fresh and the dough not sticky, to cook the butter until it's slightly brown and fragrant. It's called beurre noisette in French. Whatever it's called, the things beurre noisette and sour cream do for one another are so good they ought to be illegal.

Still, the idea of pierogies fried in olive oil has a sort of weird Med/Baltic fusion appeal. Politerranean cuisine?

However, let's not get between Kiss TC and Greg. The conversation looks like it may be both entertaining and educational.

BDL
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post #9 of 9
You're welcome. I submitted three different posts and deleted each of them myself without intervention, advice or suggestion. None of the posts were particularly provocative. Two were brief attempts to be amusing, acknowledging the insult you offered only by inference. While the third was entirely factual, dealing only with your odd beliefs about lubrication.

Nevertheless, I did delete them because, under the circumstances, any response might seem like I wanted to engage in something other than an exchange about cooking. Also, nothing I did or could write could say more about the situation than your words. Res ipsa loquitur

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