So I recently decided to make knishes, whereupon I vaguely followed this recipe. I say “vaguely” as, whenever something starts going not in an ideal direction when I’m making something, my brain flips into autopilot and I start grabbing random items and flinging them into the recipe until the food more closely resembles the idealized food item that exists solely in my head. This has a bad habit of making the outcome closely resemble utter crap half the time, but the other half of the time the results can be rather tasty.
So I started first with the dough, following the recipe until I got all the ingredients in, whereupon it was not so much dough as a powdery glob of flour with a few moist spots attached. Now, if I was super hardcore with dough-making, I would have quashed that dough good with a fork until it was forked into submission and appropriately dough-like. However, I am a pansy (and a lazy one at that), and opted for the easy way out, involving adding water and squishing it around with my fingers until the dough was actually doughy.
Next came the filling. I opted for a potato filling, and decided to look at the ingredients list, then look at another ingredients list from some other recipe, and improvise. So I boiled five potatoes, all chopped up, then dumped in some chopped onion and parsley, along with salt and pepper. After failing to mash all of these together with a large fork, I then added in butter and milk until everything finally decided to get appropriately squishy. Then I added an impulse egg for good measure. I had the original thought of “hey, I can totally make these healthy and leave out the oil/butter/etc”, but that just wasn’t happening. I globbed butter onto those potatoes like crazy, and I even lubed up the dough with some vegetable oil for good measure.
Anyhow, once the filling was done, I rolled out the dough and plopped some filling in. I made the first couple too small and fat, but the rest were larger after I realized that the dough was super enthusiastic about being stretched really far over a big pile of fatty potato. Before baking them, I rubbed some egg on the tops of the knishes for purposes of shininess.
I managed to keep those two fish in the background from plowing through these babies after they came out of the oven. They tasted…pretty good. Now, I grew up with the idea that potatoes desperately needed to be paired with something else to be edible, be it ketchup, gravy, or butter, so I found that I just wasn’t completely satisfied with these guys unless I had something to dip them in. So I zapped some butter in the microwave and dumped some garlic powder on top, and dipped away. It was magical. I even have the tighter waistline to prove how magical it was.
Here is a dynamic and moving closeup of a knish in action!
Turned out I had more dough then filling left, so I got to improvise with the last three knishes. I filled one with Muenster cheese, and while the cheese did melt all over the place, the knish was delish. As was the melted cheese that ran all over the place, for that matter. The second one I filled with chocolate chips, which chose to not really melt as well as they could. I mean, it was still good and all, being filled with chocolate. However, a smarter me might have chosen to, say, mix in some sugar and cream cheese, for some chocolate cheesecake knish action. The final chunk of dough got rolled into a tube, with some butter, cinnamon, and sugar on the inside. Tasty, but a tad too crispy for my taste.
Look, dessert knishes!
Now here’s a secret: I’ve never had a knish before in my life. As a result, I had no idea if the final product of the knish-making was in any way authentic, or folded correctly, or tasted anywhere close to what knishes are supposed to taste like. They tasted pretty darn good though, and I suppose that’s the important part. As to whether I’ll make this exact recipe again? Not sure. See, I have little experience making dough, and what little experience I have has only taught me that making dough is a ginormous pain in the unmentionable places. However, upon locating some cheap and premade dough (from the Cheap And Premade Dough Store, perhaps), I look forward to stuffing many more items into said dough, as there are few things more delicious in this world then items baked inside dough.