Keyword cheese, date night, romantic, valentines day, vareniki, vegetarian, winter
Prep Time 1hour
Cook Time 20minutes
Resting time 30minutes
Author Ksenia Prints
500gof tvorog OR firm farmer’s cheese;
1bunch of any herbschopped (avoid if making sweet filling)
1teaspoonsalt or moreto taste OR to make sweet filling, 2 TBs of vanilla sugar
200mlof beet or pomegranate juice;
600gabout 4 cups flour, sifted
To prepare filling:
In a medium sized bowl, combine tvorog or farmer’s cheese, finely chopped herbs and salt or sugar. Taste filling and adjust seasonings as needed. Set aside.
To prepare dough:
In a large bowl, stir beet or pomegranate juice, egg and salt with a fork until smooth. Pour the pre-sifted flour, one cup at a time, mixing with a spatula after each addition. Knead the dough well with your hands: it will take about 7 minutes. The finished dough should not stick to your hands. If dough remains sticky, add more flour and continue kneading.
Place dough in a large clean bowl, cover with a towel and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
To shape vareniki:
Sprinkle working surface with flour and roll out the dough in an even, thin layer (about ½ a centimeter). Using a cookie cutter or a glass, cut circles out of dough. Once all the circles have been cut, gather leftover dough, roll again and make more circles; continue doing this until you run out of dough.
Put the filling in the center of each circle. The quantity will depend on the size of the circles, but ½-1 teaspoon is a good ballpark. If there is not enough filling, the taste of the dough will be too pronounced. And if you have too much, then the the vareniki can fall apart during cooking.
Once filling is in, fold the circles with the filling in half and tightly bind the edges. Make sure that the filling does not go beyond the limits of the dough. You can leave the vareniki in this form, or you can make a braid around the seam, or pinch them into a folded circle. To make a braid, moving in one direction, gradually fold the edge of the dough on itself; to make a folded circle, take the two ends of the half circle and bring them together with a pinch.
To cook vareniki, stick to small portions (20-30 vareniki at once). If cooking more, dumplings can stick together, so it’s better to cook them in stages.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (cook these like pasta, using 1 heaping teaspoon of salt per 2 litres of water). It is necesssary to salt the water in which you are to cook vareniki, even if using a sweet filling - the salt will prevent the dumplings from sticking together.
Once water is boiling, place the vareniki in the water and reduce the heat to medium.
Stir the dumplings gently and wait for them to float; this should take only a few minutes. Once vareniki float, continue boiling them for another 2–5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the dough. During cooking, stir the dumplings periodically.
Drain vareniki of water. Serve with sour cream.
Valentine’s pink vareniki with cheese filling https://immigrantstable.com/russian-vegetarian-vareniki/ March 23, 2020