Pierogies were on the lunch menu at Saint Michael's Greek Catholic Church in Binghamton on Friday. The church is holding its annual Pierogi Sale and Luncheon. As our Melissa Kakareka tells us, it takes a lot of work to keep everyone's stomach full.
BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- St. Michael's Greek Catholic Church first began holding a Lenten pierogi sale and luncheon back in 1963. Fifty years later, hundreds of people filled into the church recreation center to get a taste.
"It started out as a little Lenten event and over the years it's kind of mushroomed into a major event in the city, a community event. It's the 50th anniversary and a lot of people have been coming here for decades," said Father Jim Dutko of St. Michael's Greek Catholic Church.
And keeping up with that kind of demand isn't easy. Hundreds of volunteers do their part, whether it's cutting dough, pinching the pierogies or serving the public.
"We have volunteers that come on all week long. There's a certain amount of effort that's put into peeling potatoes, cooking them, dicing them, putting them through the machine to make balls. Then people come in to clean the cabbage and fry it and it just goes on and on," said volunteer Mary Duke.
"The men make the circles. The women and the men fry the cabbage. They have a machine that makes these little balls of cabbage so that everybody gets the same amount. We moisten the edge of the dough and pinch them like this, then they get boiled," said volunteer Michael Duke.
The end result is thousands of pierogies filled with either cabbage or potato and cheese.
It's a true treat for parishioners and community members.
"Nobody takes the time to make them anymore. When we were little our moms were stay-at-home moms so we had these once a week. Now they are gourmet because nobody makes them," said Mary Duke.
If you didn't get your chance to get some pierogies for the first Friday of Lent, don't worry.
The fundraiser goes on until Good Friday.
The pierogies can be pre-ordered and picked up on Thursday and Fridays or people can attend Friday lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. throughout Lent.