Chef Talk: My New Favorite Word… Potluck by Jamie Bordoshuk

What happens when you want to host the party, but the thought of pulling together a meal for eight, twelve or (gulp) sixteen people takes the wind right out of your sails? You pull out the best trick in the book – potluck.  

I haven’t always been so smart. For years, my wife Rondi and I would invite people over for dinner and brush off their “what can we bring?” with an immediate “Nothing! Just bring yourselves” response. Those four little words invariably led to four (or more) days of planning, prepping and preparing.  

No more.

This past Easter, my two nieces and I were deciding who was going to host the get-together when one of them suggested a potluck.  Hmmm … interesting idea.  “I’m in,” my niece Marcie said, “but my house is torn up for the kitchen remodel.”  “I’m in,” my niece Mindy said, “but we’re just getting back from Florida the day before.”  “I can do it here,” I announced, “but it’s still going to be a pot luck!” 

Best decision I ever made.

The guest list eventually rose to 20 people, and as each guest was added to my growing list I simply asked them to bring their specialty.  Marcie brought two fabulous flatbreads as our appetizer.  Mindy was quick to claim the smoked ham.  My sister Sarah brought her famous “Party Potatoes” (yes, that’s a real thing), Kay brought the lamb cake, and Nikki rounded out the party with Mimosa and Bloody Mary fixings.

Since this party was all about bringing your specialty, I decided to spend my Saturday afternoon making Mom’s homemade sauerkraut and bacon pierogies – a Bordoshuk family favorite. They came out beautifully and would never have been possible without my new favorite word … potluck.  

Sauerkraut and Bacon Pierogi
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Dough
  1. 3 cups all-purpose flour
  2. 4 eggs
  3. 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  4. 3/4 to 1 cup water (as needed)
Sauerkraut Filling
  1. ½ pound thick-cut bacon, cut into lardons
  2. 1 16 ounce package of sauerkraut
  3. 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  4. 1 medium yellow onion
  5. 1 stick butter
Instructions
  1. Mix flour, eggs, salt and 3/4 cup water together to form dough, adding more water as needed to form a ball. Let dough rest for 1/2 hour.
  2. In a sauté pan, cook bacon lardons over medium heat until just before crisp (approx 10 min) and remove to paper-towel covered plate. In bacon drippings, brown onion until translucent, (approx 6-8 minutes). Add sauerkraut and caraway seeds. Heat until sauerkraut just starts to brown. Let cool.
  3. Cut dough ball into 6 equal pieces. On a floured surface, roll out dough to form a rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Cut dough into 8 pieces. Drop 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon of sauerkraut mixture onto on side. Brush dough edge with water, fold over other edge of dough, crimping edge with fork to seal. Continue process until dough and sauerkraut are gone.
  4. In rapidly boiling salted water, drop in 10 to 12 pierogis and cook for 8 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon to cool. In a sauté pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter and cook pierogi, (3 to 4 at a time), until brown and crisp on each side.
  5. Serve immediately with a sprinkling of kosher salt.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

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