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Uszka is a type of Polish dumpling, similar to pierogie, but baked instead of boiled. The dough contains more butter than pierogies, creating a light, crispy crust. This uszka recipe uses a savory, mushroom filling. They can be eaten plain, but are best dipped in barszcz – Polish beet soup. This recipe comes from a Polish cookbook, and was translated by my mom who immigrated to North America when she was 10 from Poland.

INGREDIENTS

Dough

  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
  • 1 stick organic, lightly salted butter
  • 1 organic, free-range egg
  • 1 tbsp light, organic sour cream
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt

Filling

  • 1 lb. mushrooms, washed (try a combination, such as baby bella, oyster, shitaki, button, etc.)
  • 1 medium organic onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp bread crumbs
  • 1 organic, free-range egg
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large bowl, add flour and salt – mix. Cut butter into flour until crumbly. Add lightly beaten egg, and sour cream. Knead dough until the ingredients are well combined and the dough glistens and does not stick to the surface (you may need to incorporate a little more flour during the kneading process).
  2. Cover the dough and let it rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  3. While the dough is resting, prepare the filling. Add the mushrooms and onions to a food processor and process until finely chopped (the mushroom onion mixture will look slightly pasty).
  4. Heat oil in a large frying pan and saute the mushroom mixture on medium-high heat stirring constantly so the water from the mushrooms evaporates and the mixture does not burn. Cook until the mushroom mixture begins to brown for best flavor. Remove mixture from pan and set aside in a bowl. Let cool for 5 minutes, then add bread crumbs, lightly beaten egg, salt and pepper.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  6. Remove dough from refrigerator. Divide into 3 sections. Roll out one section of the dough on a large floured surface into a thin layer. Use a small drinking glass and cut out circles. Set the circles aside. Continue to roll out each dough section and make additional circles.
  7. Place a 1/2 tsp of mushroom mixture in the middle of each circle. Fold each circle in half and pinch the dough together to create a seal. (Make sure the two edges of each circle are sealed well to prevent leakage of the mushroom mixture.)
  8. Arrange the dumplings on several cookie sheets and bake one cookie sheet at a time until light browned (about 10-15 minutes).
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