Perishke is my all time favourite Ukrainian food. I could eat it for days on end and not get sick of it. It is served at almost every holiday dinner, but of course, it’s tough to get a bunch of old Ukrainians to give up cheese and cream, so I decided to try to veganize the traditional dish using a crumbled tofu filling and a cashew cream sauce.
The first time I served it for family my brother’s girlfriend said, “How is this vegan if there is cheese in it?” She totally fell for the tofu substitute! Got ’em!
While Vegan Perishke takes time to make, it is most definitely worth it. Hopefully you too will get to fool someone at your next Ukrainian family holiday! Now, let’s get on with how to make these delicious, cream covered, little buns.
Make your Dough
This amount of dough will make about 30 Perishke depending on how large you make the buns in the final step.
- 1 Tbsp Yeast
- 1 Tbsp Sugar
- 1/2 Cup Lukewarm Water
- 4 1/2 Tbsp Aquafabe (liquid from a can of chickpeas)
- 3 Tbsp Canola Oil
- 1/4 Cup of Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 Cup Water
- 3 Cups of Flour
Mix together the first three ingredients (yeast, sugar, and lukewarm water). Set aside for about 10 minutes or until frothy.
In a separate bowl, whisk the aquafaba for about 1 minute, whisk in canola oil, whisk in sugar, whisk in salt, add water. Finally, add the frothy yeast mixture and stir well.
Add the flour 1 cup at a time, mix well until the flour is combined with the wet ingredients. Knead dough until it is soft and elastic, about 5 minutes. Form into a ball.
Place the dough into an oiled bowl, turn the dough once to coat in oil, cover with a towel, and set aside to rise. Let rise for about 1 hour or until double in size.
After 1 hour, punch down the dough, knead for about 2 minutes, cover and let rise for another hour or until double in size.
Make the Filling
- 1/2 Block of Extra Firm Tofu (Pressed for about 20 minutes)
- 3-4 Green Onions – Chopped
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Dill – Chopped
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 Cup Vegan Mayo
Mash the tofu with a potato masher or fork until there are no large pieces left. Add the rest of the filing ingredients and mix well. You can play with the amount of green onions and dill based on your taste preference.
Let’s make some buns!
Pinch off a small amount of dough and flatten it into a round shape with your fingers. Place a teaspoon of the filling on the dough and seal into a crescent shape and then form into a ball. (This step will take some practice. I tend to always make the buns too large, but that could also be my appetite acting on my behalf).
Place the buns on a greased baking sheet, cover with a clean damp towel, and let rise for 20 minutes.
Brush the tops of the buns with melted vegan butter or margarine.
Bake the buns at 325 degrees Farnenheit for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Make the sauce
- 1/2 Cup Raw Cashews (soaked)
- 3/4 – 1 Cup of Plain Almond or Soy Mile
- 2 Tbsp Vegan Butter or Margarine
- 1/4 Medium Onion – Chopped
- 2-3 Green Onions – Chopped
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Dill – Chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
While your buns are baking, you can make the sauce. Melt the vegan butter or margarine in a small saucepan on medium heat. Add onions, green onions, and dill. Add salt and pepper to taste. Saute until onions are translucent.
In a high powered blender, add soaked cashews and almond or soy milk. Blend until smooth. Add the cashew cream sauce to the saucepan. Mix well and allow the sauce to heat up.
Assemble the Perishke
Once your buns are baked, transfer them from the baking sheet and into a glass serving bowl. Pour the sauce evenly over the buns and serve hot!
Serve your vegan Perishke with your favourite Ukrainian foods! We paired ours with some vegan pyrohy (varenyky), Tofurky Keilbasa, and some vegan sour cream.
I hope you enjoy this dish and share it with your friends and family! Let me know what you think in the comments!