Vegan gluten-free pierogi with mushrooms

Vegan gluten-free pierogi with mushrooms

vegan gluten free pierogi close up

This is the time of the year when I am excited about making pierogi again. A friend of mine who visited last weekend said that she was also about to embark on her own ‘pierogeddon’ soon as she has four hungry mouths to feed and pierogi are her Xmas go to. Although she runs a half Polish and half Jewish household with some vegans and some non-vegans in it, pierogi seems to make everyone in her family happy so she really has her work cut out – we are talking hundreds of little parcels here!

Pierogi are an everyday fare in Poland (or at least used to be when I was a child and the pace of life was a little slower), but they also tend to feature on Polish Christmas tables as one of twelve mandatory dishes, so many people make massive batches of them and freeze them for Christmas. To my mum’s chagrin, I am as untraditional as they come (sorry mom!), but I do like my pierogi now and then. I mean what’s not to like? Especially the pan-fried ones are to die for on the cold dark days that we’ve been plunged into quite recently.

While pierogi are very easily made vegan – although there is only one traditional filling (the cabbage and mushroom one) that tends to be vegan – the traditional dough always contains gluten, which is bad news for some. After I featured my old cabbage and mushroom pierogi quite recently, I got quite a few questions about making them gluten-free so this recipe is my answer to those of you who are after some decent gluten-free pierogi with a vegan filling.

Making a vegan filling is dead easy, I went for my beloved mushrooms, but the dough without gluten or egg is the tricky part of this dish. In order to make a supple dough that will hold together, I combined two types of gluten-free flours: buckwheat and rice flour (brown rice flour is fine too), with some tapioca starch, a little olive oil and some psyllium husk powder thickened with water. The last two ingredients are there for much needed flexibility, which is usually taken care of by gluten. I tested these with both psyllium husk powder and with whole psyllium husks and they both work just as well.

vegan gluten free pierogi ingredients

What is great about psyllium husk poweder is that, as opposed to xanthan gum which is often used in commercial gluten-free dough, it is a natural, wholefood plant based ingredient that has traditionally been used to aid digestive issues (my local Indian store sells it for example). You can get it in health food stores, perhaps in your corner store and online and it’s what makes this dough quite easy to handle. It’s a very potent and therefore quite efficient ingredient that will make your gluten-free dough or any kind of dough so much easier to handle. Neither myself nor Duncan are used to gluten-free pierogi dough, but we’ve consumed these with pleasure and I hope you’ll enjoy them too.

vegan gluten free pierogi dough

vegan gluten free pierogi making

vegan gluten free pierogi boiled fried

vegan gluten free pierogi served

vegan gluten free pierogi dough fork

vegan gluten free pierogi side

vegan gluten free pierogi plate

makes
28
PREP
60 min
COOKING
30 min
makes
28
PREPARATION
60 min
COOKING
30 min
INGREDIENTS
FILLING

  • 15 ml / 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1½ banana shallots, diced finely
  • 300 g / 10½ oz fresh mushrooms (I used chestnut / cremini)
  • 4 large garlic cloves, diced finely
  • 1 large rosemary sprig, leaves chopped (or a few sprigs of thyme)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 heaped tsp red miso paste
  • 10 ml / 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • ½-1 tsp maple syrup (optional)

GF DOUGH

TOPPING

  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ onion, finely diced
  • salt
  • crushed walnuts (or walnut crumb)

METHOD
FILLING

  1. Heat up the olive oil in a large pan. Gently fry shallots until translucent and lightly caramelised.
  2. Meanwhile, chop your mushrooms into medium size dice – you can use a food processor if you like but be careful not to overprocess.
  3. Next add in garlic cloves and fry on a gentle heat for a few minutes, stirring the whole time. Just before you add the mushrooms, add chopped rosemary (or thyme) and season with some salt and pepper.
  4. Add half of the mushrooms into the pan. Allow them to fry off for 5-10 minutes, stirring from time to time.
  5. Once they turn dark brown, add the second half. Allow them to cook through (turn dark brown) and for all the excess water to cook out.
  6. Season with miso paste, balsamic vinegar, a touch of maple syrup (if liked) and more salt and pepper as needed. Allow the filling to cool down before filling the dough.

GF DOUGH (for non GF dough, see this recipe)

  1. Put psyllium powder (or whole psyllium husks) in a small bowl and gradually mix in 60 ml (¼ cup) of water. Mix well to get rid of lumps. Set aside to thicken.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine all three flours and salt. Add olive oil, thickened psyllium and enough water just to bring the dough together (2-3 tbsp / 30-45 ml of warm water).
  3. Boil a medium size pot of water, grab a small bowl of water and have a clean damp kitchen towel handy.
  4. Divide the dough into two. Roll the dough out as thinly (2 mm ideally) as you can on a lightly floured (with rice flour) surface.
  5. Using a cookie cutter (I used a 7 cm / 2.75″ one) or an upside down glass, cut circles out of the dough.
  6. Place a teaspoon of the filling in the middle of each circle, paint around the perimeter of the circle with a little water (with a finger dipped in the water bowl), fold the circle in half and gently seal the edges. Handle the dough carefully as it isn’t as forgiving as gluten dough, but if you see a tiny little crack occasionally – don’t worry, these do not fall apart as easily as their gluten versions during boiling.
  7. Keep sealed pierogi under a damp kitchen towel to keep them moist and supple. Once you’ve made about 10, boil 5 at a time for 5 minutes or longer depending on the thickness of your dough. Fish them out with a slotted spoon and place on a clean plate.
  8. If pan frying, allow pierogi to go completely cold first (storing them overnight in the fridge is ideal). Heat up a tablespoon of oil in a cast iron skillet (or a non-stick pan), lay cold pierogi on the pan and leave undisturbed for about 5 minutes. Allow them to blister on one side before flipping them to the other side and frying until browned and crisped up.
  9. To serve, slowly fry a small half an onion until translucent, season with salt and pepper. Serve warm pierogi coated in the onion-flavoured oil. I also like to sprinkle mine with some walnut crumb – it’s not traditional but it’s a Lazy Cat Kitchen twist 😉 .

NOTES
DOUGH – for regular (not GF) dough, use half of this recipe.

FOR OTHER FILLING ideas, try:

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NUTRITIONAL INFO
calories
47
2%
sugars
1 g
1%
fats
2 g
3%
saturates
0 g
2%
proteins
1 g
2%
carbs
6 g
2%
*per pierog
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5.0
5 reviews, 7 comments
REVIEWS & QUESTIONS
Basia:
That's right! I forgot to mention in my previous entry that my grandma starts making porcini mushroom uszka in November for Wigilia because they are everyone's favourites (she usually makes over 500 of them - talking about pierogeddon, haha!) She would freeze them in batches and we would have leftovers for new year's and January :)
    Ania
    Ania:
    Haha, yes, same in my family when both my grandmas were still alive, sadly they both passed away quite a few years back. It's hard to rival a granma's pierogi making endurance :) x Ania
Basia:
I just came to say I lol'ed at "pierogeddon" 😆 your friend sounds like a blast to be around.I'm so glad you made it possibly for gluten free people to enjoy the ultimate Polish comfort food and it's great to know this recipe is here for when I want to entertain my gf friends :)
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Basia! Given how many pierogi is usually needed for a family gathering, it does feel like end of days prep sometimes, doesn't it ;) xx Ania
Paulina:
Pierogi are delicious! The filling has a rich taste 🌱 As I made more dough, I served the second portion with red lentil and sun-dried tomatoes filling 😉 The dough has a universal flavor - it tastes delicious in a dry version, but it will also be delicious when sweet 💚 I recommend it 🥟
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thank you for your kind words, Paulina! I'm really happy to hear that you enjoyed these. x Ania
Janet Paula:
If i want to pan fry them, do I have to cook them first for 5 minutes before placing them in the fridgerator? Thanks so much.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Janet,Yes, you need to cook them for 5 minutes either way and I recommend making sure they are completely cold before pan-frying. Refrigerating for a few hours helps but isn't necessary. Hope this helps! Ania
mushroom50:
Thanks for this recipe, I look forward to trying it out! Kristal
    Ania
    Ania:
    My pleasure, I hope you'll enjoy it! Ania
Helen:
Thank you so much for this recipe- that's our Christmas Eve sorted, as it suits absolutely everyone's tastes and requirements, specially if they can be frozen ahead? As I'm not experienced at home freezing, could you give some more specific instructions about how to freeze please, and whether to de-frost or cook from frozen? I'm really excited to try these - I used to make kreplach, which look quite similar, (and would fry them after boiling, instead of putting them in soup) until 2 of the family became gluten intolerant.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Helen,My pleasure, I hope these will turn out to be popular in your household. In terms of freezing, I have not tried freezing these ones in particular, but I don't see why they wouldn't freeze well. In order to freeze, cool them down completely and freeze in freezer bags or glass / plastic containers. To defrost, leave in the fridge (on a plate) overnight to allow them to thaw naturally and pan-fry once fully thawed. Hope this helps! Ania
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