Here is the definition per Wikipedia:
A runza (also called a bierock, fleischkuche or Kraut Pirok) is a yeast dough bread pocket with a filling consisting of beef, pork, cabbage orsauerkraut, onions, and seasonings. They are baked in various shapes such as a half-moon, rectangle, round (bun), square, or triangle. In Nebraska, the runza is usually baked in a rectangular shape. The bierocks of Kansas, on the other hand, are generally baked in the shape of a bun.
I have heard of them called "Kraut Burgers" recently. The sandwich originated in Russia during the 1800s and spread to Germany before appearing in the United States. The term bierock comes from the Russian word pirogi or pirozhki and is the term for any food consisting of a savory filling stuffed dough. The recipe was spread throughout the United States by the Volga Germans and can be found in North and South Dakota, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Kansas and Nebraska. The term "runza" is registered as a trademark in the United States by Nebraska-based Runza Restaurants
In Nebraska "Runza" is a trademarked fast food chain. They are delicious. Well my husband hates them but tonight he loved mine. He informed me they almost tasted like a White Castle Burger. What? Anyway, my opinion is, homemade bread makes all the difference. This is a recipe I got from my mom, I am sure there 10,000 just like it, so if it is someone else's originally I bow down and give you the honor. K? I didn't photograph the dough ingredients but let's get moving on getting 'er done.
Bread Dough for Kraut Burgers
5-6 cups of flour
2 pkg's dry yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups hot water
1/2 cup butter softened
Combine 2 cups flour, yeast and sugar. Put into stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and combine completely. Add butter and hot water, mix 2 minutes and add eggs and 1 more cup of flour. Let mix for 2 minutes and add remaining 2 cups of flour, 1 at a time. I had to end up using an extra 1/2 cup. Let knead for 3 minutes or until your dough is a nice soft dough, not sticky. Turn out into a bowl sprayed with nonstick spray or vegetable oil and let rise 45 minutes. While it is raising, let's get to work on the filling!
2 lbs ground beef
4 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup onion, minced FINE
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 cup beef stock
2 tbsp butter
American Cheese (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degree's. Melt butter in a large pot, add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes until translucent. Add in ground beef and cook until browned and broken up well. Add Worcestershire sauce and mix thoroughly. Dump in cabbage (it will wilt alot) and then mix again.
Pour in stock and put the lid on and cook for 20 minutes on low stirring occasionally.
Divide dough into 2 parts. Roll each section out and cut into 6 pieces. Put a piece of cheese in the middle (optional) and add as much filling as you can fit on! Bring all the corners to the middle and seal by pinching.
Flip over and put onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. You should get 12 out of this batch of dough and filling. When you are finished with all of them let them rise for 30-45 minutes. Brush them with an egg wash or spray with nonstick cooking spray for a nice color. Bake for 20-25 minutes
We made some round, made some long, just like the real Runza restaurant. That of course was my husbands idea because ya know, husbands get what they want right? Ok mine does (lovey gushy eyes)
I hope you enjoy these, I always have to have mine with ketchup!
Your "praying I didn't infringe on any copyright crap" chefwannabe