This is an old recipe my grandmother used to make. I think every Eastern European country has its own version. This is the adapted variation according to my taste. You could use other dry fruit like apricots, or fresh plums for example. You could also make spiced breadcrumbs by adding cinnamon, or cardamom. It can be a dessert, or an appetizer, but also a side dish.
If your prunes are dry and shriveled soak them in water before using them. The serving dressing will not be very tasty if you use regular vanilla extract (it contains large amount of alcohol). Instead use the non-alcohol, or a very low alcohol Mexican vanilla extract, or similar. —Medooka
- Serves 8
Russet or Yucon Gold potato
all purpose flour
sour cream (optional)
brown sugar (optional)
non-alcohol vanilla extract (ie Mexican vanilla)
- Peel and cut the potato into equal pieces and boil it until it is soft. Take out of the water and let cool. Then mash it or grate it.
- While the potato is boiling prepare the breadcrumbs. Put a sautéing pan on medium heat and add vegetable oil. When it is hot but not smoking hot, add the breadcrumbs and stir well. Reduce heat to medium-low. You want to fry the crumbs. They will be done when their color changes from light to dark. Stir almost continuously adjusting the heat because they burn easily. When they are done take them out into a bowl and let cool.
- Transfer potato to a stand mixer. Add the eggs and salt and mix to combine. Start adding flour and mix on low speed until it is combined. Then take out to a lightly floured working surface.
- Start kneading to check the consistency. If the dough it too sticky add more flour, only a tablespoon at a time and knead. It is important not to add too much flour and not to over-knead the dough because it will become glutinous and rubbery. You want a light and soft dough so as soon as it doesn’t stick to your hands stop working it.
- Once the breadcrumbs have cooled add sugar and mix well. You need to wait for the crumbs to cool so that the sugar doesn’t melt when you add it.
- Put a deep pot ¾ filled with water on high heat and bring to boil, then reduce to simmer. Meanwhile assemble the dumplings. Scooping dough with a spoon, make balls the size of your palm and insert a prune or two (together) into the center of the ball. Put the dumplings on a lightly floured plate. Do so until you are done with the dough.
- Now cook the dumplings: carefully add as many balls as you can into the pot. Once the dumpling floats up leave it about 30 more seconds, then take it out with the spatula, and transfer directly to sugared breadcrumbs. It is important that you swirl it around the breadcrumbs while it is still wet and hot. Don’t be afraid to press the breadcrumbs into the dumpling. Then take it out onto the serving plate. Do so with all dumplings.
- Optional dressing for serving: mix sour cream and sugar until the sugar dissolves. Stir in vanilla extract and pour over the dumpling.