New Recipe — Bierocks

I grew up in a small town in South Central Kansas. Small enough that we had lunch ladies (I should say moms, as most of them had kids in school with us) that made our lunch homemade and fresh everyday. I can still remember the smell of lunch cooking as we walked the halls between classes. There were some definite favorites and the lunches we had are some of my favorite memories. My husband and I enjoyed school lunch so much that a couple of years ago when we had the chance to visit my mother in law at school during the lunch hour, we ate school lunch with her and our boys. It was just as much fun as a grown up as it was as a kid, complete with chocolate milk from the cardboard carton.
I was so delighted when the PTA came out with a cookbook from the grade school several years ago and my mother in law bought me one as a Christmas gift. It has so many of my favorite recipes from school lunches and it’s been fun to make them for our boys who have their “school lunch” around our dining room table. This recipe is a German Mennonite recipe and one of our favorite school lunches ever. I haven’t perfected it as well as the ladies who made them for the entire school, but they sure bring back memories. (I should say some of the recipes in the cookbook are still the “big” group recipes used in the school, including this one so I had to do some calculating to bring down the ratios)
3lbs hamburger
1 onion chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 head cabbage shredded (I process mine in the food processor)
4 cups shredded American cheese (I’ve used cheddar, and usually add a bit more)
Brown beef, onion, salt and pepper in skillet. Chill in fridge. I usually add my cabbage to the mixture and chill it all together in the fridge while I make my dough.
8-9 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup dry milk
1 tsp salt
1 package  yeast
3 1/2 cup warm water (95-100 degrees)
2 eggs
1/2 shortening (I used butter)
Mix all together. Dough will be soft but shouldn’t be very sticky. Pinch dough into 2oz balls (I have no idea how big this really is, really I just make them about the size of a golf ball or plum). Let rest briefly. Flatten with hands into a circle, if the dough sticks to your hands dust them with flour. Place scoop of meat mixture in center (usually 2-3 TBLS or so…about an ice cream scoop). Pull dough up and pinch edges together. Place pinched side down on paper lined pans (or you can grease the pans). Let rise (45 min-1 hour), mine don’t get big like rolls…maybe I don’t let them rise long enough but usually by this point I’m pretty darn hungry for bierocks). Bake at 325 for 25-30 minutes or until light brown. They do freeze well.
Kerry and the boys like them with ketchup, but I prefer mine with mustard. They are wonderful! I’m still working on making them look “pretty” like they did in school, but they still taste good. To make it a classic “school lunch” serve with dill pickle, corn and oatmeal cookie.
**I did read in another recipe in the same cookbook that you can roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thick and cut in rectangles then fill and pinch as above. I may try this next time to save a little time**


One thought on “New Recipe — Bierocks”

  1. Bierocks rock! I grew up in the same school in the same class. I can still remember these delicious German treats. I’ve been waiting to taste these for years. So thank you Erin for posting this recipe.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.