Silesian Dumplings

Silesian dumplings are a ball-shaped potato dumplings with a well in the centre. The dish comes from Silesia, a region in Poland, where my partner comes from. They are traditionally served with beef, gravy and red cabbage. 

I have never tried these dumplings until I met my boyfriend. His mother makes perfect Silesian dumplings and for years I wanted to make these for him, but he refused, saying they will never be the same as hers. 
I admit, I failed many times, we still laugh about it, but I finally know the texture and they never come out as chewy as a rubber, like at the beginning.

They are not hard to make, quiet the opposite, but this is one of those recipes where it is hard to estimate how much flour you will need, hence the problems with the texture and the final product. The general rule is that you need to first cook the potatoes, then mash them and, in a bowl, divide into 4 parts, take 1 part out, and in place of the potatoes, put the starch and that will be the exact amount you will need to make perfect Silesian Dumplings. 

I weighed my starch for this post and I had about 250g, but this really depends on the quality of your potatoes and if they are on a dry or more wet side. Mine were very wet, so they took more flour than normal. You need to be very careful and add as little of the starch as possible, as it will make the dumplings very gummy and hard to chew. There has to be just as much flour to keep the potatoes together to form a nice and smooth balls.

Ingredients (40-50 medium size pieces):
  • 750g potatoes, cooked
  • potato starch
  • 1 egg
  • onion and butter for serving

Peel and boil the potatoes in a salty water until cooked through. Strain and place in a bowl. Let it cool for 10-15 minutes. Then mash with a potato masher or potato ricer. The finer the consistency of the potatoes the better. 

Once the potatoes are mashed, smooth them out and divide into 4 quarters. Take one quarter out and sift in the starch in the place of the potatoes you just took out. Add one egg and combine together until smooth dough. 

Scoop out 1tbsp sized pieces and roll into balls. Place on a plate or chopping board, flatten slightly with your palm and with a finger or end of a wooden spoon, create a well in the middle. Continue until all done. Keep them covered while working. 

You can make them a day in advance, place on a plate covered with plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge. Or you can freeze them - place on a chopping board, leaving space so they are not touching each other, and place in the freezer. Take out after an hour and place in a ziplock bag. Frozen dumplings might need to cook a couple of minutes longer.

Boil in a salted water for about 3 minutes (from floating up to the surface). Or you can boil the water, put the dumplings, let them rise to the surface and take the saucepan off the heat, cover with a lid and leave for 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve with browned butter and onions or gravy.



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