Russian cuisine plays a significant role in attracting various people to this country. It has a unique history and has been evolving over centuries. The most interest usually lies in so-called “бабушкины рецепты“/grandma’s recipes. That’s where we get all kinds of tasty pies (pirozhki), pancakes (bliny) and of course different soups, including the world-famous borsh. I heard many European people call it “borsht”, but there is no “t” in the Russian variant. So what makes Russian food so special? Maybe it’s due to the secret cooking technique, being passed on in families for generations, or the way all the ingredients go together, creating a mouth-watering taste, or maybe both. The thing is, tasting Russian cuisine is an unforgettable experience, and, having tried it once, you’ll definitely come back for more 🙂
Extremely filling and rich in flavour, this beetroot soup is known to travellers from all over the world. Traditionally, a thick beef broth is used as a base, but vegetarian version is just as good. Served with a dollop of sour-cream and a fair amount of fresh green seasoning.
The dish takes its name from ancient Russian, which had the word “sit'” meaning “subsistence”. This soup is indeed quite nutritious, including fresh cabbage or sauerkraut, some meat and lots of tasty herbs.
Pirozhki in Russian means “pies”. They come in all possible shapes (the one you see on the picture is probably the most traditional one) and with all possible fillings. My personal favourite are pies with mashed potatoes and mushrooms. Each Russian family has its own way of cooking pies, usually practiced by grandmother (babooshka).
You may as well call them pancakes, but the taste will probably seem a bit different. The round shape of bliny comes from pagan times, where people used to worship many gods, in particular the god of Sun, Yarilo. In Russia we still celebrate Maslenitsa, the pagan holiday by origin, which takes place every year at the start of spring. People participate in different competitions, eat pancakes and burn the man-sized doll of the Winter, made of straw. Pancakes with red caviar are considered to be a delicacy in many parts of the world.
Vatrooshki is a delicious type of pastry, stuffed with a sweetened cottage-cheese (or quark). Nothing is better than a plate of vatrooshki and a cup of nice tea in the cold winter evening.