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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Fruit Dumplings!

My husband spent two years in the Czech Republic and Slovakia serving a mission for our church.  Apart from a lot of language skills, and some pretty fantastic stories, he brought back a lot of love for some new types of food.

As we've tried out various types of food from his mission, I have to admit that I haven't had something yet that I don't like.  The foods are are comfort-type foods.  These fruit dumplings are no exception.  They may look like somewhat wrinkly dinner rolls, but just wait.
Not impressive looking.  Wait for iiiiiiiiiiiit.....
Once you add a little topping (I like sweetened cream cheese and a little nutmeg)...

And then cut into it's fluffy, fruity goodness:

You get something that not only looks delicious, but feels like a hug for your insides.

The visual on that is a little weird...just trust me.  They're really, really good.

Yeast Fruit Dumplings (adapted slightly from  Kynute Ovocne Knedliky)

2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
Pinch of sugar
¼ cup lukewarm water
¼ cup milk (room temperature)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon grated lemon peel
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
3 egg yolks
2 cups all-purpose flour 

Your choice of fruit--pitted cherries, plums, raspberries, strawberries, peaches, apricots--something that will soften quickly, as the dumplings don't cook very long.
Granulated Sugar

4 oz cream cheese
1/4 cup powdered sugar (more or less to your liking)

1.  Sprinkle the yeast in the lukewarm water with the pinch of sugar.  Wait a minute or two, and then stir everything in.  Wait 2-3 minutes after that to allow the yeast to get nice and bubbly, and nearly doubled in volume.

2.  Add all the other ingredients to the yeast mixture, except the egg yolks and the flour.  Mix well, then add in the egg yolks, one at a time.  Stir in the two cups of flour, to make a medium-firm dough.

3.  Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and begin to knead it, adding more flour as necessary.  You'll need to knead it for about 10 minutes (possibly longer), or until the dough is smooth and elastic.  Count this as your arm workout for the week.

4.  Place the dough into a greased bowl, turning to cover the dough.  Cover with a kitchen towel, and let rise until doubled (35-45 minutes).  If you poke the dough, and the indentation remains, you're good.

5.  While the dough rises, take your fruit, and sprinkle it with granulated sugar until it's coated.  Cover and set aside.

6.  Take the dough out of the bowl, and roll it into a rectangle about 12" x 16"
--I made mine about the size of my silicon baking mat.  Cut the dough into 12 squares about 4" on all sides.  Place fruit into the middle of the square.  We used apricots for the pictures above.  Pitted, sugared, and then I placed a whole apricot (so, two halves) into each dumpling.  We also did raspberries, and did about 5-6 raspberries in each dumpling.

7.  Take the sides of each square and bring them together over the fruit--pinch and seal until you have the fruit entirely inside of the dough (you don't want things leaking out).  Really, make sure you pinch and seal them well.

8.  The original recipe says that you should boil the dumplings, but we've gotten a more rubbery dumpling using that method.  I used our steamer instead.  First, I sprayed down the steamer with cooking spray, then stuck 6 dumplings in the pan, and steamed them for about 10 minutes total, with no turning, and the lid on the pot.  Then do the other batch.

Lastly, drizzle whatever toppings you'd like to:  melted butter and granulated sugar, cream cheese topping, whatever makes your heart happy.  Eat them while they're still warm, but don't burn yourself on the hot filling.

Enjoy (probably should say, "Na Zdravie!")!

Oh, and if you're looking for something to do with those Egg Whites, you should try making Kayla's Macaroons.  I didn't get enough air out of mine, but they were still chewy and delicious, and I do plan to try them again.


  1. These look just like the ones from that diner in Prague. I can't wait to try them!! Mom M

  2. Wow! Those look incredible! I think I'm going to have to try making a gluten free version. Mmmm!!!

    1. Oh, that'd be wonderful! If you ever figure it out, I'd be interested in the recipe--my mom can't have gluten either.