How to Make Baked Pyrizhky

How to Make Baked Pyrizhky. Baked pyrizhky is a traditional Ukrainian dish consisting of buns stuffed with a variety of fillings. These warm, hardy buns make a nice meal on their own, or they can be served as a side dish. Because the fillings are entirely sealed up in the buns, they also make an excellent traveling food. While traditionally ovoid in shape, baked pyrizhky can also be made in square or circular shapes. Two filling recipes will give you a chance to try a meat-based and a vegetarian alternative so all your guests can enjoy this tasty Ukrainian baked treat.

Things You'll Need

  • Rolling pin
  • Large bowl
  • Two greased baking sheets
  • 2-inch cookie or biscuit cutter, round or square
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • One packet of active dry yeast (about 1 tsp.)
  • Two beaten eggs
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, shortening, oil or some other fat
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 1/2 to 5 cups flour
  • 2 lb. mushrooms
  • One small onion
  • 4 tbsp. butter or margarine
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • Two hard boiled eggs
  • 1 tbsp. fresh dill
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 lb. ground meat
  • One medium onion
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • Two hard-boiled eggs
  • 1/2 cup stock or water
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 1 tsp. fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

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Prepare the Pyrizhky Dough

Mix the 1 tsp. of sugar with the warm water and let it dissolve.

Sprinkle the yeast over the water and sugar mixture and let it rest for 10 minutes. This gives the yeast a head start.

Scald the milk in a saucepan, or heat it until small bubbles form around the edges of the pan.

Add the butter to the hot milk and allow it to melt. Let the mixture cool.

Combine the milk and butter mixture, the yeast and water mixture, eggs, salt and 1/4 cup sugar in a large bowl.

Mix in the flour 1/2 cup to 1 cup at a time, blending after each addition, until the dough is about the same consistency as bread dough.

Turn the dough out onto a clean, floured work space and knead it until smooth and elastic.

Put the dough back in the bowl, cover it with a towel and let rise until double in size (usually 1 hour, but this can take longer in cooler weather).

Punch the dough down and knead it a few times. Cover it up and let it rise again.

Prepare the Meat Filling

Melt 2 of the 4 tbsp. butter in a large frying pan.

Mince the medium onion and add it to the pan.

Add the other 2 tbsp. of butter and the ground meat to the onions and brown.

Cover and let simmer until the meat is thoroughly cooked.

Remove the meat from the pan, leaving the fat and juices.

Stir in the 1 tbsp. of flour.

Add the water or stock and bring to a boil.

Return the meat to the pan and let the mixture cool.

Chop the hard boiled eggs.

Stir in the parsley and eggs. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Prepare the Mushroom Filling

Mince the small onion.

Melt the 4 tbsp. butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook until tender.

Chop the mushrooms finely while the onions are cooking. When the onions are tender, add the mushrooms and sour cream, reduce heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes.

Dice the hard boiled eggs.

Add the bread crumbs, dill, eggs, salt and pepper and stir. Let the filling cool.

Make the Pyrizhky

Take a piece of the dough (about a third of it) and roll it out on a clean, well-floured work space until it is about 1/2-thick.

Cut out the dough with a round or square cutter (about 2 inches wide).

Roll one of the squares or circles you've cut out to about 1/4-inch thick.

Place a mound of the filling in the center of the dough.

Fold the dough in half and pinch along the edges to seal it.

Roll the sealed dough ball around in your hands a bit to get it to more uniform shape.

Place the ball seam-side down onto the greased baking sheet.

Roll out and stuff remaining dough squares or circles and then repeat the process with the other two-thirds of the dough, one third at a time.

Brush the prepared buns with melted butter.

Cover the pyrizhky with a towel and let rise for 1/2 to 1 hour, or until they look about one and a half to two times as large.

Bake at 375 degrees F for approximately 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Tips & Warnings

  • Instead of rolling out the dough and using a cookie or biscuit cutter, you can tear off 1- to 2-inch pieces of the dough and roll those out to 1/4-inch thick.
  • Pyrizhky take a long time to prepare. Keep in mind that from the time you make the dough until they are ready to eat can be as much as 4 to 5 hours so start early.
  • There are many different filling variations you can use in pyrizhky, from sauerkraut to cottage cheese. Try making smaller batches of different fillings to allow your guests to choose the type of bun they want.
  • Make sure the seams of your prepared buns are thoroughly sealed. If they aren't, they will pull open when baking.
  • All the recipes on this page are for one full batch of about 24 pyrizhkys. If you want to try both the meat and mushroom fillings, you will have to halve the recipe or double the dough recipe.
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