Ukrainian Vushka

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One of my all time favourite Ukrainian meal items are Vushka (although we call them Oushka, pronounced ‘oosh-ka’).

These plump, mushroom filled dumplings are usually served with Borscht, placed right into the bowl of soup served with smetana (sour cream) on top.  They are little mushroom filled pillows from heaven and I could eat a plateful (and have been known to) all to myself.

A couple weeks ago my daughter, her husband and myself headed up to visit my Aunt and Uncle who live over 2 hours farther north than the Homestead.  Hence why we made the trip from the Homestead as opposed to driving from Southern Ontario….6 hours one way is a looong way.  As the kids were coming up to the Homestead for the weekend anyway, we decided a side trip to see Lydia and Jack was necessary.

Once my Aunt found out we were coming, she promptly switched into Ukrainian Food Overdrive (known as UFO, not to be confused with that other UFO meaning).  Out came the Borscht pot, rich soft dinner rolls were prepared and of course….Vushka….lots of them.

Son-in-law had never had them before, but he loves anything mushroom related, food in general actually, so he was up for anything.

Lunch was pretty much ready just after our arrival.  We stepped into her farm kitchen and our noses were immediately smacked with the aroma of the fresh, home-made dinner rolls coming from the oven.  One of the best smells to walk into, along with apple pie, which was sitting on the stove, also pulled fresh from the oven.

As we sat down to a long awaited treat, I was immediately brought back to Christmas Eve dinners when I was young, watching my Baba plop heavily laden platters of Varenyky (Perogie) and Vushka onto the table.  Heaven, I was in absolute heaven.

Here is how you can make your own Vushka, I urge you to try them the next time you get your soup pot out.  Borscht isn’t the only soup they go in, they also would go very well in a beef vegetable soup.  I hope you enjoy them.

Vushka_2Vushka

 Filling:

1 small onion, finely chopped
2 – 3 tbsp butter
2 cups finely chopped mushrooms
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 Egg yolks

Cook onion over medium-low heat in butter until tender, add mushrooms and cook together until mushrooms are cooked through.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Remove mixture from heat and beat in the egg yolks.  Let the mixture cool thoroughly.

Basic Varenyky (Perogie) Dough:

2 Cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 egg or 2 egg yolks
½ cup cold water (approx.)

Mix flour and salt in a deep bowl.  Add egg (or egg yolks) and enough water to make a medium soft dough.  Knead dough on a floured surface until smooth, do not overknead as the dough will then be tough.  Divide dough into 2 parts.  Cover and let stand for 30 minutes.  Roll dough as thin as possible on a floured surface and cut dough into 3” squares, rerolling scraps until used up  ** making perogie dough is something you need to get a feel for, add half the water first, then add small amounts until you get the consistency you are looking for.  Adding more if necessary.

To Assemble:

Place a heaping tsp of filling in the centre of each square.  Bring one corner to another (diagonally) to form a triangle.  Take the 2 sides of the triangle and pinch together, this forms an ‘ear’ shape with the top point, hence the name Vushka, which translates to ‘Little Ears’ in Ukrainian.  Boil as you would perogies until they float.  Excellent served in borscht or sauté the leftovers on their own with a little butter…a piece of Ukrainian heaven!

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13 thoughts on “Ukrainian Vushka

  1. YUM!!!! deb I want to try these! you say “making perogie dough is something you need to get a feel for”. having never made this dough before, what exactly would I be looking for?

    • Hi weebs! Perogie dough should be smooth, soft and it will be very elastic. If it gets too tough, it will be like an overworked pie dough. Add the water a little at a time until it comes together. Have you made your own pasta dough? very similar if you have…good luck making them and of course, let me know how they turn out! :)

  2. I was so glad to have Deb and family visit.

    Making a special Ukrainian meal also took me back to the times my mother would whip up a meal of Perogies, (actually, it’s Peroheh in Ukrainian or Varenyky………….we always called them Peroheh). We all love foods of our childhood and these were my favourites.

    Drop in again Deb and bring the rest of the family.

  3. Yum is right! I want to try this too. They look like and remind me of a mushroom filled tortellini. Those do look easy enough to do and tasty as all get out. I can understand eating the entire plate. Not a problem at all and one I’m sure I will probably do too. ;-/

  4. Well Hellooooo my eastern gal. I have been away from the computer for so long, I had many blogs to catch up on.
    Good job on the garage roof and the deck.
    The pink unknown flower is a nicotania and I think the muskova(?) chairs are more comfortable :)
    Gobble Day was great and well celebrated, baby brother got married over the weekend so I got to visit with my new SIL, AND I am a new gramma again and a new auntie, so I was able to visit with the little goobers as well. I was in baby heaven.
    Hubs and I are redecorating our bedroom, we ripped out all the old drywall and rug and spent some time insulating, drywall, taping and picking out paint colours. Last coat of mud is drying, then it needs a sand and a touch up and I can start painting, then off to the city to pick out a new carpet and move all my stuff back into the bedroom. Hubs designed some great new closets -we each have our own, but 1/2 of his will be part of mine, lol.
    Anyway thanks for the great reads on your blogs, great pics of your canning shelves. I have tom sauce to finish tomorrow, salsa is done. I also have the last of my pumpkins to mush and freeze.
    I also have some saurkraut to make and I want to can some of our salmon we caught this summer. So my canning pot is still in use and going strong :)
    Hope you have a good day!!!

    • There you are! I figured you were up to your eyeballs in end of season garden chores, your chickens and canning the last of the crop(s). Congrats on being a gramma again too! I know how much you like the little two-legged critters :) re-drywalling is about the messiest job on the planet, kudos for you both doing it together without killing each other, send a pic when the job is done…did you take a before shot? Could be a magazine spread article in the works :D You have a great day too chica, nice to hear from you again my friend!

  5. I was raised by my grandparents who came from Ukraine in the 20s. Never heard of these, they sound good though.
    My grandmother only cooked Ukrainian food. We also called perogies, Peroheh. she didn’t like us using Polish dialect.
    But anyway these sound fabulous. I might just give them a try! Thanks for the share!

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