Grandma’s Eastern European Favorites Recipes

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Potato Pancakes

Everyone loves potato pancakes. They eat them with apple sauce or sour cream. Sometimes they eat them plain. We’ve even seen them as the base for eggs Benedict. They are a sure fire crowd pleaser. 


  • 4 lg potatoes, peeled
  • 1 onion
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • About 6 Tbsp veg oil
  •  6 Tbsp butter
  • Sour cream and apple sauce on the side


  1. Grate the potatoes and onion
  2. Combine them
  3. Set them on paper towels
  4. Beat the eggs
  5. Whisk in flour
  6. Squeeze the potatoes and onion by hand to remove excess water
  7. Add the egg mixture
  8. Mix thoroughly
  9. Heat 1/2 of the oil
  10. Add 1/2 of the butter
  11. Drop about 1/4 c of the mix in and flatten it
  12. You will need to do a few batches
  13. Throw in a few at a time but don’t over crowd the skillet
  14. About 4-5 min per side until crispy
  15. Set them on paper towels when they are done to drain the excess oil

Wiener Schnitzel

This is another all-time favorite. If you think you have left overs, don’t get too excited before you check the fridge. They can disappear overnight, even cold. 


  • 4 veal cutlets, pounded
  • 1 c flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2Tbsp cream
  • 1 c fine breadcrumbs
  • 6 Tbsp oil
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 4 Lemon wedges


  1. Combine the salt and flour in a shallow bowl
  2. Whisk the eggs and cream in another bowl
  3. Place the breadcrumbs in a third bowl
  4. Dredge each cutlet in flour, then egg then breadcrumbs
  5. Heat half of the oil in a large skillet.
  6. Add half of the butter
  7. You’ll need to do 2 batches
  8. Fry the cutlets 2 min per side until golden
  9. Garnish with a lemon wedge.

Pierogis- Dumplings with Filling

Grandma Scamper made these every summer. She would fill them with peaches or plums and steam them. We prefer them with a savory filling like meat and we boil them. Potato and cheese fillings are popular too. Strawberries and sweetened marscapone is a hit with guests as a dessert. 



  • 2 c flour
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/2 c warm water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp veg oil


Brisket is our favorite. But the classic meat filling is ground beef with egg .

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 3 hardboiled eggs
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 minced clove of garlic



  1. Mix the dough ingredients together
  2. Knead thoroughly
  3. Let the dough rest for 30 min
  4. Prepare the filling
  5. Roll the dough to about 1/8 inch thick
  6. Cut circles about 3-4 inches in diameter, use a can as a guide
  7. Place a couple of Tbsp of filling in the center and fold the circle in half
  8. Wet the edge slightly with your finger. Dip your finger in water and run it along the edge
  9. Pinch the edges together
  10. Make sure to remove excess air. Aka burp it
  11. Make sure that each dumpling is completely sealed
  12. Boil a large pot of water
  13. Drop the dumplings in
  14. Remove them when they float
  15. Some people like to fry them then so they are browned and crispy
  16. If you like that
  17. Heat 3-4 Tbsp veg oil
  18. Fry the dumplings about 3 min per side.


  1. Sauté everything but the eggs in a large skillet
  2. The beef will add enough fat as it heats.
  3. The beef should be fully cooked and the onions should be translucent
  4. 15-20 min
  5. While the meat cooks, chop the hard boiled eggs
  6. Let the meat cool
  7. Stir in the eggs
  8. Meat dumplings are often served with sour cream on the side
  9. Fill the dough following the dough instructions

Next Time


Bread dumplings

Beef stroganoff

Enjoy Grandma’s favorites

About the author

The Scamper

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