Each year, in October, my 3 aunts, my mother and myself get together to make pierogies from my great grandmother’s recipe. This year, 10 pounds of potatoes, 3 pounds of cheese and 8 (or 9) batches of dough got us 428 pierogies.
We start at 10 am, coaxing the dough from flour and water, making the stuffing from potatoes and white American cheese. The doll gets rolled out, squares are cut, potatos and cheese stuffed into the pockets of dough and then the pierogies are hand pinched shut. They are laid out in careful rows along the dining room table, nestled next to each other and the bubulkies (leftover dough rolled into fat short noodles) to dry.
It is tedious work but time moves quickly when the only thing you are thinking about is rolling, filling, pinching. The process takes about 4 hours, start to finish. After clean up, there is idle time and flipping the pierogies so they dry out. The rest of the family starts to gather to eat the delicious little bits of dough and potato. Onions are fried in butter, white sauce is made and the pierogies are dropped into boiling water. We drink beer and chatter, gather around the fire and smoke cigarettes.
And then, we eat them. Delicious, warm, doughy and fattening.