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Title: Vareniki  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Pelmeni, Ukrainian Canadian, Pitepalt, Manti (dumpling), Kalduny, Chuchvara
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Varenyky (Ukrainian: варе́ники, singular "варе́ник") are a Ukrainian kind of stuffed dumpling associated with Ukrainian cuisine.


Varenyky are square- or crescent-shaped dumplings of unleavened dough, stuffed with mashed potato, sauerkraut, cheese, cabbage, meat, hard-boiled egg (a Mennonite tradition) or a combination of these, or with a fruit filling. Varenyky are very popular in Ukraine and Russia.

During preparation, the filling is wrapped with dough, boiled for several minutes, and then covered with butter or cooking oil. The name varenyk, in fact, simply means "boiled thing", from the adjective varenyy. In certain regions of Ukraine they do not boil varenyky, but steam them instead. Varenyky are typically topped with fried salo bits (shkvarky) and onions and accompanied with smetana. Left-over varenyky may be fried. Sweet, fruit-filled varenyky are served with sour cream and sugar. Raw varenyky (with the dough uncooked) can be stored frozen, then cooked in three minutes, which makes them a convenience food.

Other preparation methods include the Latvian tradition of glazing with egg white, baking, and serving with soup; the Mennonite tradition of baking and serving with borscht; and the Polish tradition of boiling, then frying in butter with onions.

Varieties of varenyky

Varenyky come with a wide variety of either savory or sweet fillings. Here is a list of varenyky served in a restaurant specializing in national Ukrainian dishes:[1]


  • Potatoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Potatoes and mushrooms
  • Cabbage (pre-roasted sour cabbage)
  • Cabbage and mushrooms
  • Cottage Cheese (Canadian Mennonite and Canadian Ukrainian variations)
  • Sauerkraut (sautéed)
  • Salty white cheese
  • Fish (salmon and pike-perch)
  • Meat (pork and beef mixture)
  • Meat and cabbage
  • Liver (beef)
  • Liver and potatoes
  • Offal (mixture of beef lung, heart, liver, "Old Ukrainian style")

Savory varieties are usually topped with melted butter, sour cream, fried salo, and fried onions. In the case of the Canadian Mennonite cottage cheese variation, these varenyky are usually topped with a savory cream sauce called schmauntfat.


Sweet varieties are usually topped with melted butter, sour cream, and sometimes raspberry jam. Ukrainian cherry varenyky is often topped with honey.

There are also alternative ways to make varenyky and even in some cases they are filled with kiwi or mango.

Lazy varenyky

Lazy varenyky (Russian: ленивые вареники, Ukrainian: книдлі, ліниві вареники) in Russian and Ukrainian cuisine are gnocchi-shaped dumplings made by mixing farmer cheese with egg and flour into quick dough. The cheese-based dough is formed into a long sausage about 2 cm thick, which is cut diagonally into gnocchi, called galushki in Russian, halushky in Ukrainian or kopytka in Polish. The dumplings are then quickly boiled in salted water and served with sour cream or melted butter. The name "lazy varenyky" faithfully reflects the very quick preparation time of the dish: it usually takes ten to fifteen minutes from assembling the simple ingredients to serving the cooked dumplings.[2] Lazy varenyky differ from standard varenyky in the same way that Italian gnocchi differ from ravioli or tortellini: these are fluffy solid dumplings, not stuffed pockets of dough. A similar dish in Polish cuisine is called lazy pierogi (Polish: leniwe pierogi or kopytka).

Monumental varenyky

A monument to varenyky was inaugurated in Cherkasy, Ukraine in September 2006.[3] The monument erected at the entrance to a hotel shows Cossack Mamay (a Ukrainian folklore hero whose fondness for varenyky was narrated by both Taras Shevchenko and Nikolay Gogol) eating varenyky from an earthenware pot, with a huge crescent-shaped varenyk behind him.

A monument to halušky was inaugurated in Poltava, Ukraine in 2006. [4]

In 1991, a roadside monument with a giant pierogi (the Polish name for varenyky) was erected in the village of Glendon in Alberta, Canada.[5]

In January 2010, a pierogi statue was proposed to be erected in Minneapolis, MN.[6]

See also


External links

  • - Varenyky recipes various languages
  • - European Recipes - Ukrainian Varenyky
  • Russia Beyond the Headlines, article with recipe

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