Last week was fun. Not only did we have some great food. We got to taste test our beer of the week...a few times. This week, we picked the brain of Derek over a NLD and he gave us some leads, and it all looks tasty. Enjoy!
Beer: Sunshine Pils, Troegs Brewing Company, Hershey, PA
Ha! You thought I was going with Yuengling? I’m not going out like that!!! But seriously, I have been told that it is the beer of choice at Penn State being 2 hours east of State College and America’s oldest brewery. But we like to head off the beaten trail. So we head 2 hours south of Penn State to Hershey, PA and find Troegs Brewing Company. Founded in 1996, it is mainly a Pennsylvania beer, but it is starting down the east coast with a few distributors in MD, DC, and VA. There are a lot of great beers, but Derek says that on a hot day (and it’s been hot lately), go with the Sunshine Pils. It is a triple medal winner at the Great American Beer Festival in 2008, 2009, and 2011. And while it is a Seasonal Release, it is a crisp pilsner (4.5% ABV) but has added hops for a kinda in-between beer. It seems to play nicely with most summer foods, but also with fall fare.
Food: Pittsburgh Pierogies w/ Sour Cream
Now I am told if you are from Eastern Pennsylvania, it’s Philly Chessesteaks. If you are from Western Pennsylvania, it’s Pitts-burgers (adding french fries and coleslaw to the hamburger). But for tailgating purposes, you will find many around State College that have Pierogies. A Pierogi is a Polish pastry (say that five times fast) stuffed with potatoes and, depending on where you are from, cheese and onions. We will stick to the Western PA version (sorry Philly). Now you can buy them in most grocery stores in the frozen food section, or you can make your own. Here is the recipe:
- 2 cups flour, plus extra for kneading and rolling dough
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup sour cream, plus extra to serve with the pierogi
- 1/4 cup butter, softened and cut into small pieces
- butter and onions for sauteing
- 5 large potatoes (red)
- 8 oz cheddar cheese
To prepare the pierogi dough, mix together the flour and salt. Beat the egg, then add all at once to the flour mixture. Add the 1/2 cup sour cream and the softened butter pieces and work until the dough loses most of its stickiness (about 5-7 minutes). You can use a food processor with a dough hook for this, but be careful not to overbeat. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes or overnight; the dough can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Each batch of dough makes about 12-15 pierogies, depending on size.
Peel and boil 5 large potatoes until soft. Red potatoes are especially good for this. While the potatoes are boiling, finely chop 1 large onion and saute in butter until soft and translucent. Mash the potatoes with the sauted onions and 4-8oz of grated cheddar cheese (depending on how cheesy you want your pierogies), adding salt and pepper to taste.
Roll the pierogi dough on a floured board or countertop until 1/8" thick. Cut circles of dough (2" for small pierogies and 3-3 1/2" for large pierogies) with a cookie cutter or drinking glass. Place a small ball of filling (about a tablespoon) on each dough round and fold the dough over, forming a semi-circle. Press the edges together with the tines of a fork.
Boil the perogies a few at a time in a large pot of water. They are done when they float to the top (about 8-10 minutes). Rinse in cool water and let dry. Serve with side of sour cream.