What do you know about pierogi?

Posted on 04. Jan, 2013 by in cooking, Culture, food, Places to eat

Who established a Guinness record in making pierogi the fastest? Where’s the statue of pierogi? What is pierogarnia? How should we say: pierogi or pierogies? Here are some interesting facts about Polish pierogi:

1. Pierogi or pierogies?

A word “pierogies” is popular in U.S. and Canada because it underlines a ‘plurality’ of this well-known Polish food. However, this is not so appropriate since in fact a mere word ‘pierogi’ is already plural in Polish language! Its grammatical singular equivalent ‘pieróg’ is rarely used by Poles. Simply, it has a completely different meaning. Pierog, translated into English language: pyrih, is an Ukrainian pie shown on the picture below. This food can be sweet when filled with curd cheese or apples, and savory when stuffed with potatoes, cheese, groats, meat or cabbage. Sounds yummy :)

2. Pierogarnia in Poland

When you visit Poland remember that in many Polish towns you can come across some Polish restaurants called Pierogarnia. These are places designed to offer pierogi in dozens tastes. This is a great thing for every tourist going to Poland. Most of pierogarnie (plural for pierogarnia) also sell other popular Polish food.

3. The Pierogi Race

Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team organizes the so-called ‘pierogi race’ during their games. Four types of pierogi called Sauerkraut Saul, Cheese Chester, Jalapeno Hannah and Oliver Onion take part. Well, these are four guys dressed up as pierogi. I have no idea if it looks appetizing? :) Probably it’s funny. For sure it’s a marketing campaign.

4. Pierogi and Polish pierożki

An interesting fact about Polish language is that most of Polish nouns have a diminutive form and an appropriate hypocorism. Most of Polish diminutives mean a thing smaller than the base word. For example simple Polish word dom (house and home) has both a diminutive form domek (small house) and a hypocorism domeczek (emotional). This is very often that diminutive and hypocorism have a positive, emotional inclination (there are some, however, that mean a contempt). A word pierogi is not an exception. A diminutive form of pierogi is a bit more difficult to pronounce and looks like this: pierożki. You can use it in order to express your admiration for the taste of this Polish food ;) The singular form also exists: pierożek.

5. Pierogi statue in Glendon

A small village Glendon, Alberta, Canada unveiled its roadside tribute to Ukrainian pyrogy in 1991. They had even appointed an Official Pyrogy Committee. Glendon’s pyrogy is a huge statue of one pierogi put on the fork. The plaque states as follows: THE PYROGY – PYROHY. BEST MADE IN GLENDON. A European food that was brought to Western Canada in the early 19th century by the working and poor people. It originated as a boiled dumpling, and later people added whatever they desired inside, and it became a pyrogy – pyrohy, sometimes called varenyky. Admittedly, an original idea :) Actually this statue is 25-foot height, weights 6000 pounds (!) and is made of fiberglass and steel. Rather not edible, I would say. But will lasts forever ;)

6. Guinness record in making pierogi

The Guinness record in making pierogi belongs to ten students from a Catering School in Wrocław, Poland. In 100 minutes they managed to make as many as 1663 dumplings! That was over 90 pounds. Great result has been officially written down in The Guinness Book of Records. After cooking and packing pierogi were sent to Wrocław children’s homes.

Do następnego razu… (Till next time…)

About Kasia

My name is Kasia Scontsas. I grew up in Lublin, Poland and moved to Warsaw to study International Business at the University of Warsaw. I have passion for languages: any languages! Currently I live in New Hampshire. I enjoy skiing, kayaking, biking and paddle boarding. My husband speaks a little Polish, but our daughters are fluent in it! I wanted to make sure that they can communicate with her Polish relatives in our native language. Teaching them Polish since they was born was the best thing I could have given them! I have been writing about learning Polish language and culture for Transparent Language’s Polish Blog since 2010.

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