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Russian/Ukrainian Pampushki Recipe

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Pampushki - Russian/Ukrainian Potato Balls Stuffed with Cheese

Russian/Ukrainian Pampushki - Potato Balls Stuffed with Cheese

© 2008 Barbara Rolek licensed to About.com, Inc.
This recipe for pampushki is common in Russia, Ukraine and other parts. Some fry their pampushki, others poach them in stock.

Eastern Europeans love to hide food in other foods as is evident here. The basic premise of these dumplings is a potato ball stuffed with something, usually cheese. The rest is up to the imagination of the cook.

If frying, bread them, otherwise they'll fall apart in the hot oil. I like to use feta cheese with dill in mine although farmers cheese and chives are more traditional.

Enjoy these as a main course, side dish, appetizer or snack.

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Makes 12 Pampushki

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 pound (about 3 medium) potatoes, peeled and grated
  • 1 cup freshly mashed potatoes (about 1 large)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup farmers or feta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives or dill
  • All-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg beaten with 1 teaspoon water
  • Fine, dry breadcrumbs

Preparation:

  1. Squeeze excess water from grated potatoes. Place in a medium bowl with mashed potatoes, salt and pepper, and mix well. Set aside.

  2. In a medium bowl, combine cheese and chives or dill. If using farmers cheese, add 1/4 teaspoon salt. Set aside.

  3. Scoop up an egg-sized portion of potatoes and flatten to a circle in the palm of your hand. Place 2 teaspoons cheese in the middle and fold edges over, pinching to seal. Roll into a ball. Repeat with remaining mixtures.

  4. Dredge balls in flour, then beaten eggs and finally in breadcrumbs. Let balls dry while you heat oil to 340 degrees in a deep fryer or heavy-bottomed saucepan. Fry for 10 minutes to make sure raw potato is cooked.

  5. Drain on paper towels and serve hot.
Note: If poaching dumplings in stock or water instead of deep frying, add 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour and 1 egg to the potato mixture. Gently poach the balls for 20 minutes.

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