Prep 504 hrs
Cook 20 mins
My maternal grandmother, Anna (Buhal'tsev) Bell Mersky, made the BEST KNISHES I ever tasted. Her secret was not just the chicken fat, but making the chicken fat into grieven, as described in this recipe. The grieven is better tasting, after being frozen. ENJOY - ENJOY - ENJOY. If you have any questions e-mail me: AlanLeonetti@q.com
- 7 large potatoes (mashed)
- 2 large onions
- 4 cups flour (1 lb.)
- ground black pepper
- sugar (optional)
- 3⁄4 cup peanut oil (may substitute vegetable oil)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1⁄8 teaspoon baking soda
- garlic powder
- 3 -4 ounces chicken fat (grieven)
- 3 weeks to 3 months prior to making knishes, sauté 2 large onions with 3 oz. chicken fat with skin in peanut oil until brown. Crumble up the skin into pieces.
- Add 1/8 teaspoon baking soda when onions are nearly done.
- Mix the sautéed onions with a few ounces of sauteed schmaltz (chicken fat with crumbled skin) thoroughly.
- Wrap or seal tightly and place into freezer.
- This is called "grieven" and is the secret to wonderful tasting knishes.
- Defrost the grieven prior to making the knishes.
- FOR THE FILLING: Place mashed potatoes into large mixing bowl.
- In a skillet heat the grieven mixture and add it into the mashed potatoes.
- Season to taste with salt, black pepper, garlic powder and sugar to taste.
- Do not season heavy with salt or garlic, and especially not with the sugar, as you do not want it to be sweet.
- FOR THE DOUGH: Place the flour into a mixing bowl.
- Mix a little less than 1/2 cup peanut oil and save remaining oil.
- Add 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1/8 teaspoon of salt and just enough water to make the dough.
- Roll out the dough as thin as possible, being careful not to create holes in the dough.
- Cut dough into 4 to 5 inch strips and then into 4 to 5 inch squares.
- ASSEMBLY: Fill each square with a heaping tablespoon or more of the potato mixture and then with wet fingers, fold in the corners & pinch and seal closed.
- Gently press to form patties, but do not squash too thin.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Lay out the knishes onto a greased cookie sheet.
- Brush top of each of the knishes with peanut oil.
- Keep checking, as often as you desire, to make sure they only become an almost golden color and not burnt.
- With a spatula, turn the knishes over, brush on peanut oil again, and continue baking until almost golden in color.
- You can refrigerate and reheat in either the oven or wrapped with paper towel and reheated in the microwave.
- You can also double or triple the recipe and place knishes into tightly closed Tupperware containers and freeze until ready to serve.
- When ready to serve, remove from freezer, defrost and reheat as described.