For as long as I can remember my mom made pelmeni. When describing it to people I start off by saying it is a Russian ravioli or a Russian won-ton. Basically, it is dough with meat inside that you then throw into boiling broth to cook. It is eaten as a soup with butter, pepper and lots and lots of vingar added for flavoring. You know you have enough vinegar when after the first bite a little bead of sweat forms on your brow. Or, maybe that is just my family.
Googling it today, I came up with all kinds of fun facts, gotta love wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pelmeni). My mom would sit down and bust out 500 of these little guys all while telling stories about when her family would make them. Aunt Steph, I would love to hear some of these again when you have the time! Sis and I tried to recreate the family moment this past weekend. Family - check, good times - check, 500 - YIKES! We ended up making around a 100, with both of us working hard and Vera "helping."
Mom's were always beef until she had me and then the recipe got basterdized. We have tried turkey, spinach, and now pork pelmeni. Sis and I made half beef (for her and B-i-L) and half pork for the Mazzetta family. Also, a brilliant idea of Sis was to dye the dough for the pork ones pink so that we could tell them apart. I hate running into a beef surprise.
The recipe is quite large and so we cut it down and used 2 lbs of meat.
Pelmeni Meat (from my Aunt Nikki):
(THE NIGHT BEFORE)
In your big giant bowl put 6 pounds of ground beef. In your blender drop 2 whole eggs, 1 tablespoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, and 2 good size onions chopped up---Make an "onion milkshake"--pour over hamburger in bowl and mix with your hands!
Put into refrigerator overnight and let flavors blend. (Don't use lean ground been---the pelmeni come out dry and hard)
Measure out 1 cup of eggs --pour into bowl and add 1 Tablespoon salt. Then, add 1 cup tap water and start adding flour until thick and noodle consistency---it helps to let the dough rest (covered-so it doesn't dry out) at least a half an hour.
You roll out your dough and use a shot glass to cut out small circles. Taking a small circle in hand, you stretch it out to about twice its orginal size. Take a small piece of meat, about the size of a marble, and place it in the center of the dough. Fold the dough in half (taco shape) around the dough and pinch the open edge with your fingers. Then, bring the two edges of the taco together to form a spaceship. It is totally clear now, right?
You place your spaceships on a cookie sheet and stick them in the freezer for an hour of so. When they are nice and solid you throw them in baggies and then back in the freezer for keeping.
To cook, heat some broth on the stove (beef, chicken, or veggie) and put the pelmeni in. When they rise to the top let them cook for another 5-10 minutes and then eat as a soup. You can add pepper, vinegar, and butter.