Recipe for Cottage Cheese Vareniki


2 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 lb cottage cheese (may use low-fat)
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup milk
1 melted butter
1 bread crumbs, browned in butter
1 sour cream (optional)
1 fried bacon, crumbled (optional)
1 cottage-cheese filling:
1 lb dry cottage cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 salt



Dough: First mix flour with the salt. Combine the egg, milk and cottage cheese in blender. Stir combination into the flour and salt and knead to make a soft dough. Cover and let the dough stand for 10 minutes.

Filling: In a bowl, combine the cottage cheese with the egg, and season to taste with salt. The filling should be thick enough to hold its shape in a spoon.

Roll the dough quite thin on a floured board. Cut rounds with a large biscuit cutter or with the rim of a glass. For speedier work, the dough may be cut into 2 - 2 1/2 inch squares. Put a round or square of dough on the palm of your hand. Place a spoonful of the cheese filling on the dough, fold it over to form a half circle or triangle, and press the edges together with your fingers. The edges should be free of filling. Be sure that the edges are sealed well to prevent the filling from running out. Place the vareniki on a floured board or a kitchen towel (don't crowd them), and cover with a kitchen towel to prevent drying.

Drop a few vareniki at a time into a large quantity of rapidly boiling salted (optional) water. Do not attempt to cook too many at a time.

Stir very gently with a wooden spoon to separate the vareniki and to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the pot. Continue boiling for 3 4 minutes. Vareniki are ready when they are well puffed. Remove them to a colander and drain thoroughly. Place in a deep dish, sprinkle generously with melted butter, and toss very gently to coat them evenly with butter. Serve in a large dish without piling or crowding them. Top with bread crumbs. The traditional accompaniment is sour cream or crumbled bacon, or both.

An additional egg or egg yolk, or some thick sour cream, may be used in the filling if the cottage cheese is very dry.

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