Sunday, February 9, 2014

Lack of Snow & Perogies

I notice from the news and weather reports that there are storms all over the Continent.  Of course it always snows back East but here on the Coast snow is a rarity, except that for the past few days it has been dumping snow just a few miles south of us.   So far we have escaped unharmed.  We have had record low temperatures.   Yesterday it went down to minus -8.8°c which is the lowest recorded temperature since 1939.  We are not used to the cold so I have to gloat before it starts snowing later tonight

    Yesterday afternoon  (Saturday)

Yesterday afternoon it was nearly shirt sleeve weather and I could feel the warmth of the sun.  Not so warm in the shade though but it felt like early spring with temperatures just above freezing

    Today  (Sunday)

I just had to gloat at our good fortune of being in a snow free place, at least until the forecast storm arrives later tonight.  

Saturday found me experimenting in the kitchen and getting a bit frustrated with making dough (not the $$ kind)

Nothing fancy, 2-1/2 cups of flour, one egg, dash of salt and a cup of warm water, kneeding, blending rolling and then using a beverage glass to roll it out and other glass to cut out the circles.  The dough was so sticky and I had to keep dusting with flour to keep it from being stuck together

In the meantime I was boiling 2-1/2 lbs of russet potatoes until soft, then mashed .  I blended one onion in my Cuisinart and cooked them in butter until they were reduced and then added them to my mashed potatoes.  After they were mixed, I then added another 1/2 lb of Cheddar cheese into the mixture which turned the mashed potatoes to a nice yellow colour.  It was smooth and very tasty, if I don't say so myself

I put a dob of mashed potato mixture into the centre of my cut out dough circles and then pinched them together to form my  perogies.    I love potato cheddar & onion perogies

It took me a while to get a production line moving.   I took the scraps, rerolled to recycle the dough

If you ask me the hardest part about this whole process is making the dough.   The mashed potato mixture is a "piece of cake"

To minimize "sticking" I had to be generous with the flour and I put the finished ones on separate plates so they wouldn't all stick together

After I cleaned everything up it was time to cook them.  I like them with bacon bits and tons of sour cream.  You boil the perogies until they float, and then keep them in there for a few minutes longer.

I cut my bacon strips into small pieces, put them in a frying pan and tried to carmelize them and I was generous with the sour cream.   That bowl of congee was also cooking all day in our slow cooker.  It's sort of like a very thick rice soup with pork.   Another variation is to use fish instead of meat

MMmmmm,  potato, onion and cheddar Perogies . . .  You should try some . . .

There are many sales promotions offered in the USA but NEVER offered in Canada.  I see the deals all the time but we cannot participate as we do not have a USA address to send rebate cheques/checks.   Canon USA has been promoting camera/printer combos since before Christmas and then put on another promotion whereby you can buy a Camera and Printer, get a $400. rebate when you send in the UPC code from the Box.  Many buyers buy the combo and then sell the printer for a nominal cost.  I bought my last printer this way several years ago.   Basically they get the printer FREE and then sell it to further reduce their camera cost.  

I noticed a few new factory sealed printers for sale on our local Craigslist and was humming and hawwing talking myself into and out of buying this printer, but in the end I decided to buy it as it would enable me to print Black and White,  has WiFi built-in and is also an Air-print printer for iOS

Here it is, all 54 lbs of solid mechanical perfection.  I struggled to have it fit into my meagre trunk and it nearly killed me as I had to carry it from the street into the house.

It also came with a 50 pack of 13" x 19" photo paper

I kept rationalizing to myself that for the price of the paper and the ink cartridges alone this would mean that this printer was Free.   I have read only great reviews for this printer as being simply the best dye printer on the market.  It has 3 black cartridges so it can print "real" black & white using the Epson B&W print driver

I have also been busy learning Windows 8.1    It's a bit different than what I am used to but my new computer also has touch screen so it is like having a really big iPad.

I've still got enough Potato, onion & cheddar perogies left for another meal.   Maybe tomorrow, and it's something I am looking forward to.  Did I mention that I love perogies ?


  1. Your perogies look scrumptious Bob. I'm glad they're across the continent, otherwise I'd be gaining instead of losing.

    1. David:

      we bought some frozen perogies and they were awful. so naturally I had the tast of perogies on the tip of my tongue and I've been wanting to learn how to make them myself. So what else is there to do on a day when it doesn't snow.

      I've gone up since my last report. We can meet in the middle somewhere

  2. A whole meal of things I opted not to eat. But perogies are pretty good. And I hadn't made congee in probably 20 years when the kids were small. What do you think of the Canon drivers? In the past they've been a real pain.

    1. I used to love perigees. Alas, I am with RichardM on this… it's not gluten free, and not vegan. But I am sure that Brandy would have a healthy alternative for us in store.

    2. Richard:

      We seem to make congee all the time but we also go to the Congee House and get the one with fish . . . delicious.

      I print within Adobe photoshop elements and it works great. I only need to install the canon drivers (from their website). using Canon Easy-photo is more problematic as it assumes you are an idiot and tries to automatic which causes problems. The problem is when you "scale" and choose "fit to paper". I have found that the best way is to resize the image to your final print size @ 300 dpi (or 360 dpi on Epson printers) for best results.

    3. Sonja:

      I generally try to eat in moderation not cutting out anything. I don't care about Vegan or Gluten but I minimize my intake. I am not as regimented as some of you. I can eat Thai Tofu or a bacon cheeseburger, depends what I feel like

  3. Bob,
    You can cook for me anytime! And bring your pink crocs!!

    P.S. Did you get my email?

    1. Tina:

      Oh how I wished . . . save some room for me in "the middle"

      I didn't forget, I'm trying to fit it in but I wanted to finish posting up my video so i can conclude my trip

  4. Mmmm perogies. I haven't had them in years. I thought about making a vegan version as it wouldn't be too hard, but alas, I'm too lazy and figured I'd be better off eating straight veggies. sigh.

    1. Trobairitz:

      i was thinking of you when I was making the dough. I still have some vegan flour and I could use corn starch instead of the eggs. For the filling I could delete the cheese but I am not so sure about the sour cream. These perogies were NV: Nearly Vegan if that's a category

  5. It must have been a perogy kind of day yesterday, that's what we had too. It has been freezing cold here this last week and they were predicting snow in the Capital Region, in fact we were supposed to get pounded today. Apparently the rest of the Island is getting hammered with snow as I post this. There is absolutely nothing here today. It's raining and has warmed up and we are supposed to get sunny breaks this afternoon. I think we have that same printer, it gallops through ink in a hurry.

    1. Dar:

      What ! You made perogies too ? Did I say that I just LOVE perogies, not the Hunky Bill kind as I like them boiled and NOT fried. Cheemo is good. but make sure to fry up some carmelized onions in butter with lotsa sour cream

      so far NO SNOW here. Was supposed to snow overnight but today Nothing but a bit of rain. Don't have to scrape windshields with rain.

      I have been using a Canon Pro 9000 mk 2 and it is great. Not too bad with ink but I also have the self refill kit and chip resetter. This new printer prints about the same but is slightly more frugal with ink and it has WiFi and can print true black & white

  6. Surprise to see snow on the ground first thing Sunday morning, here on Whidbey. Not much, and it was gone by noon, but a beautiful sight while it lasted.

    The cert has arrived! The cert has arrived! On to DOL for the enhanced.

    Making perogies would never have crossed my mind but for this post. They're delicious just to look at, comfort food for a PNW winter day. Especially with the bacon bits and sour cream. Calories? Shmalories!

    I heard of congee, but very little. There used to be a big restaurant in SF that had congee as a specialty. Time for me to learn more.

    1. John:

      We don't get much snow but when we do it makes the world brighter but then goes grey as it melts. We were supposed to get snow since Thursday but so far, nothing.

      Perogies are comfort food, just like Mac'n Cheese, or Shepard's Pie. I love them all. All things in moderation. We all end up in the same place no matter how healthy you think you are. Lots of Congee and noodle houses up here, now that you are getting your paperwork in order. Congee is actually very good for you and filling too

  7. I've not seen or heard of perogies before but it seems that we could become very fast friends. I have heard of congee but never had any. Being in the kitchen with you while cooking looks about as fun as fun gets.

    1. Coop:

      Perogies are Ukrainian or White Russian . . . simple food. Not many Ukrainian restaurants around here. I think most people just buy frozen or make their own. We have a few Ukrainian churches who make perogie and cabbage roll dinners for fundraising.

      I'm not afraid to try new recipies. If you have a slow cooker, just put some turkey bones into a crock/slow cooker with some rice and some liquid and leave it on low all day until the rice turns to a thick glutenous soup. If you like fish, add just before serving. You make like it

  8. Bob - not a fan of perogies (glutenous gluck!) ... but am a fan of Canon Pixma printers. Mine is a much, much, much older version (only has two black inks) but still works like a charm. I also print from Adobe Photoshop (Unless I'm in a real hurry and don't really care what they look like - and still I've had no problem printing from the Canon software.) I've also experimented printing on Artist papers and find the quality is holding up much better than anything else. Have fun.

    1. Karen:

      I love perogies, but boiled NOT fried and in moderation so as not to have too much dough.

      I also like Canon Printers. I have had several and am still using my Canon Pro 9000 mark 2. It is a great printer. This new one is for my backup and to print B&W when I get around to setting it up. I want to try some Hahnemuhle fine art Paper one day. I have a sample pack to try out the different types. It took me a while to figure out the ICC profiles and where to place them