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Jewish Potato Knishes Recipe

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Jewish Potato Knishes

Jewish Potato Knishes

© Barbara Rolek licensed to About.com, Inc.
A Jewish potato knish (kuh-NISH) is a savory single-serving pie filled with meat, potatoes, kasha, sauerkraut, onions or cheese (and lately spinach and other ingredients) that is baked or fried. It's similar to a British pasty, Mexican empanada, Russian pirozhki and an Italian calzone. Read more about knishes here.

The recipe for the filling was provided by Lloyd Weinstein of Benjie's Deli in Santa Ana, Calif. The knishes can be individually quick frozen on baking sheets and transferred to freezer bags for storage, if desired. Note that, if you want to freeze the knishes before baking, the instant potatoes in this recipe help to stabilize the filling as it thaws while cooking, soaking up any excess water caused by the thawing.

The Jewish meat knish dough demonstrated in this step-by-step procedure is how Benjie's Deli makes their meat knishes. The dough recipe in these steps is different from the one I have included here. I prefer this dough because it is flakier, but the choice is yours. Here is another knish dough recipe you might like to try.

Here is a larger photo of Jewish Potato Knishes.

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Dough must be chilled: 2 hours

Total Time: 3 hours

Yield: About 24 Potato Knishes

Ingredients:

  • Knish Dough:
  • 8 ounces softened unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Potato Filling:
  • 6 large potatoes, peeled, cut into chunks, boiled, cooled and shredded in a ricer or grinder
  • 1 pound onions, chopped and sautéed
  • 2 large whole eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup instant potato buds
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ascorbic acid or vitamin C powder (to keep the potatoes from turning dark)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon tobasco sauce
  • 8 ounces finely shredded Cheddar cheese (optional)
  • Egg Wash:
  • 1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water (and 1 drop of yellow food coloring, if desired)

Preparation:

  1. Prepare the knish dough in a food processor fitted with a metal blade, process butter, cream cheese and sour cream until smooth. Add flour and salt and pulse to blend. Turn dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap. Using floured hands, form into a ball and wrap tightly. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.

  2. Meanwhile, prepare the potato filling by mixing together all the ingredients in a large bowl.

  3. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Flour a work surface and place the dough on it. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest 15 minutes.

  4. Roll the dough to a 1/4-inch thickness. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 3-inch squares. Egg wash the squares with 1 beaten egg mixed with 1 teaspoon water. Place two cookie-size scoops of filling on each square. Then fold the ends in as for an envelope.

  5. Place knishes on a parchment-lined baking pan and brush with egg wash. Continue with rest of dough and filling. Bake for 20 minutes or until knishes are golden brown on the top and bottom. Serve warm as an appetizer, side dish or meatless main course.
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