When I speak with my Australian friends who went to Russia they say: "Russians fed us dinner for breakfast, dinner for lunch and dinner for dinner". And this is true. Most of Russian meals are very filling and mainly home made.
Let's learn some more of Russian cuisine...Today we will learn how to cook four Russian dishes.
is a warm watery fish dish, however calling it a fish soup would not be absolutely correct. "Ukha" as a name for fish broth was established only in the late 17th to early 18th centuries. In earlier times this name was first given to thick meat broths, and then later chicken. Beginning from the 15th century, fish was more and more often used to prepare ukha, thus creating a dish that had a distinctive taste among soups.
A minimum of vegetables is added in preparation, and in classical cooking ukha was simply a rich fish broth served to accompany fish pies (rasstegai, kuliebiaka, etc.). These days it is more often a fish soup, cooked with potatoes and other vegetables. A wide variety of freshwater fish is traditionally used.
Ukha made from various types of fish such as sturgeon, salmon, or cod. It usually contains root vegetables, parsley root, leek, potato, bay leaf, dill, tarragon, and green parsley, and is spiced with black pepper, saffron, nutmeg, and fennel seed. Fish such as perch, tenches, sheatfish, and burbot are sometimes used to add flavour to the soup. In XIX century, many travellers visiting Russia claimed that ukha is one of the best dishes in Russian quisine.
A wide variety of freshwater fish can be used, and some aficionados opine that one cannot make a good ukha from saltwater fish species. Fresh fish lends the dish the best flavor, and so if frozen fish is used, it is better not to defrost it. Preference is given to smaller, younger fish, with the tail parts of bigger fish discarded.
Back in Russia we cooked ukha on an open fire on weekends. Almost every weekend when spring would start early in May and the ground was dry after winter snow waters and covered with tender white and purple flowers, we would go camping with my parents, my husband and my two small kids. We would set up a small camp on the banks of Istra-river (not far from Snegiri train-elektrichka station) in the forests not far from Moscow, sometimes we crossed the river by shallow water to get to the other, greener side carrying the small ones on our shoulders. This picture still stays in my mind as we all look like a family of travelling monkeys indeed.
The air would be already full of spring sounds: woodpeckers, nightingales, hawks and other small forest creatures would greet us with their happy songs, bird cherry trees would just start blooming at this time of the year filling the crispy air with head-spinning perfumes, the silver birch trees were soaking wet and full of juices. My father would proclaim himself as a head of the trip and made us listen to his orders (most of them were funny jokes though); we would prepare a place for open fire, collect old and dry wood, set up some three sticks above the fire and would adjust an old camp pot on. We would usually use fresh sturgeon or Bajkal salmon for such soup. I found some very similar recipes online which you will read in the text below. But coming back to the camp story, teh soup woud be so nice and the fresh air so relaxing and peaceful the kids would go to sleep in the hamaks right after lunch. We would play volleball or just mark around looking for early spring rare flowers (lilies of the valley) and muchrooms like strochki and smorchki (truffels family). The sun was very warm and rewarding and w,e like the rest of nature that has not seen it for a long and cold autumn/winter, would enjoy every ray of it.
These trips would continue till late autumn and that first tender snow... But the fish soup (Russian uha) was a must and a remarkable feature of each trip.
There are two ways to make Russia’s oldest soup, ukha. The first way goes like this: catch a fish in a crystal clear lake or river. Throw it into a kettle of the crystal clear water and boil until the eyes pop out (not yours - fish's!!!!!). That’s how you know it’s done. Consume immediately. And that’s it. Which is fine if you happen to be on the shores of a crystal clear river, know how catch a fish, and can make a fire in the wilderness.
Ukha has been around for centuries, and like all Russian dishes, has changed and adapted in the kitchens (and riversides) where it is prepared. Ukha comes from the word “ukho,” the Russian word for ear, which is odd since fish don’t have ears. Ukha originally had nothing to do with fish, but was rather a thick, rich stock made from the leftover parts of cows and pigs, including the ears, the feet, the sinews, and other trimmings. The word ukha became synonymous with “bouillon” and ultimately with the simple broth and fish soup popular with both peasants and nobles alike.
Chucking fresh fish into boiling water is not so much a recipe, as a method of cooking, but ukha was re-imagined and tweaked throughout the centuries. At the Tsar’s table, “amber” ukha, redolent with precious saffron strands, was made with perch or sturgeon. The French chefs working in Russian noble kitchens concentrated on perfecting the flavor and appearance of the bouillon itself, clarifying it with egg whites and eggshells and experimenting with different kinds of fish. Some Russian chefs insist upon the addition of potatoes and root vegetables, whilst others vehemently protest that anything but fish and water make the concoction no longer ukha, but genertic fish soup. You can heard violent arguments about whether or not to add lemon slices, and some heated discussions as to how many different kinds of fish you can use for ukha. There are many fish in the sea, and many recipes for ukha.
So, if you’d like to try ukha, a recipe culled from numerous stories, cookbooks, advice from Russian fishermen, and a little sage input from one famous fisherman follows:
Ingredients: 2 liters of Fish Stock (recipe below) 750 grams of scaled and deboned white fish such as pike, perch, halibut, cubed (5 centimeter pieces) 750 grams of salmon fillet, cubed (5 centimeter pieces) ½ of a parsley root or turnip, cubed (2 centimeter pieces) ½ a celery root, cubed (2 centimeter pieces) 1 tsp of olive oil 2 leeks or one large yellow onion 1-2 bay leaves 15 allspice pellets 4 Tbls of Malden sea salt 1 Tbls of black peppers 1 bunch of flat parsley 1 bunch of dill Lemon slices (if you dare!) for garnish
Instructions: 1. Sweat the leeks or onions in oil in a heavy bottomed soup pot on moderate heat. 2. When the leeks and onions are soft and translucent, add the parsley and celery root cubes and sauté until tender (5-7 minutes) 3. Add the fish stock, bay leaves, allspice, salt and pepper. Raise heat and bring to a boil. 4. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. 5. Add the fish, poaching it lightly at low heat for 7-8 minutes. 6. Remove the bay leaves and add chopped fresh parsley and dill. 7. Serve immediately. Russians traditionally serve ukha with rastigai or fish pies, and it is the traditional accompaniment to Salmon Coulibiac.
Fish Stock: Fresh stock is made from natural ingredients, which is far superior than prepared and processed cubes or tinned broths, which introduce too much salt and a chemical taste that has no place in a fresh soup like ukha. Whenever possible, take the time to make fresh stock, and while it isn’t essential to clarify it, nothing looks better than a clear, sparkling broth to showcase the delicately poached fish and the brilliant green garnish.
Ingredients: 2 fish heads, gills and eyes removed (here is where your friend the fishmonger can be so helpful!) 2 liters of water 1 stalk of celery ½ a yellow onion 2 Tbls Malden sea salt 1 Tbl of black peppercorns 3 crushed cloves Trimmings of fresh herbs (keep these in a plastic bag in the freezer): parsley, dill, scallions, tarragon etc. 3 egg whites and eggshells
Instructions: 1. Place all the ingredients except the eggs and eggshells into a heavy, deep-bottomed stockpot. 2. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer on low heat for 1 hour, skimming the surface of any scum, which has accumulated. 3. Remove from the heat. 4. Line a colander with fresh cheesecloth or a clean linen kitchen towel and strain the bouillon into a clean stockpot.
At this point, you can stop, but if you wish to clarify the stock, proceed as follows: 1. Replace the stockpot onto moderate heat and bring to a simmer. 2. Whisk the egg whites together with one cup of the hot stock and then pour the mixture into the stockpot. 3. Add the crushed eggshells and stir for four minutes. 4. Reduce heat and slide the stockpot to the left so that only the left third of the pot covers the burner and let simmer for ten minutes. As the egg whites cook, the cloudy matter of the stock adheres to them. 5. Rotate the stockpot around to allow the other side of the pot to cover the burner and let simmer ten minutes. Do the same to the top and bottom of the pot, taking care that the stock does not boil over. 6. Remove the pot from the heat. Line a fine sieve with cheesecloth or a clean linen dishcloth over a tall stockpot. Ladle the stock and egg mixture carefully through the sieve, taking care that the bottom of the sieve does not touch the clarified stock.
Cooked on open fire ukha had always that special "smoking" smell and taste to it - unforgettable!
are fried curd fritters, garnished with sour cream, jam, honey, and/or apple sauce.
They are widely made in Russia, Belarusia, Lithuania, Poland, and Ukrain cuisines. The cheese mixture may contain raisins for extra flavor. In Russia they are also known as tvorozhniki (творо́жники).
Syrniki are made from creamy quark, mixed with flour, eggs, and sugar, sometimes adding vanilla extract.
The soft mixture is shaped into cakes, which are fried, generally in
vegetable oil. The outside becomes crisp, and the center is warm and
creamy. They are sweet and served for breakfast or dessert. Their
simplicity and relative lack of expensive ingredients makes them very
popular in Eastern Europe.
The name syrniki is derived from the word сыр in Russian or сир in Ukrainian (transliteration: syr), meaning "cheese" in both languages. Although the modern meaning of the word сыр (syr)
in Russian is hard yellow cheese, the original word in Slavic languages
stood for soft white cheese (similar to today's quark cheese, which is
still called сир in Ukrainian but metamorphosed into творог, tvorog in Russian)Thus, the word syrniki, derived from the old meaning of syr, came to designate pancakes made from soft white cheese.
Servings: Makes about 10 syrniki (serves 4-5). Ingredients for Ukrainian Sirniki: 15 oz (about 2 cups) farmers cheese, homemade or purchase 2 packages. 4 large eggs 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus about 1/2 cup more for dredging 3 tbsp sugar 1/2 tsp salt 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon white vinegar 1 cup raisins 2-3 tbsp canola oil for each batch
Toppings: Fresh fruit or jam, sour cream, powdered sugar; whatever you like!
How to Make Ukrainian Syrinki: 1. In a large bowl, mix together cheese, eggs, 3/4 cup flour, sugar and salt.
2. Place baking soda in a small bowl and add vinegar; give it a stir as it fizzes. Add this mixture to the cheese mix.
3. With a hand-held electric mixer, mix until uniform consistency. Stir
in the raisins with a spoon. It will still have some little cheese
4. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add 2-3 tbsp canola oil.
5. Add 1/2 cup flour to a small bowl. Place a heaping tablespoon of the
cheese mixture into the flour. Reach into the bowl and sprinkle flour
over the top of the pancake. With Well-floured hands, remove excess
flour by gently transferring the pancake from one hand to another.
6. Once the skillet and oil are hot, place patties directly into the
skillet as you mold them. Saute until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes
each side, flipping once during cooking.
7. Transfer to a plate and serve with your favorite toppings. I’m old school so I like sour cream, fruit and powdered sugar.
Are these pictures making you hungry? :o)
or Kvasheni ovochi are very populatr in Russia. Uusually they include cucumbers, tomatoes, mushrooms, eggplant, cabbage. Sometimes watermelon and apples.The process of making them is very time consuming so we prefeer to buy them at the Russian grossery stores. There are soem pictures...
are very popular dishes in Russia. It is a native Russian dish. Kashas were made from all the possible groats with meat, fish, liver, mushrooms, onion. For base, milk, cream, meat and fish broths were used. It was impossible to imagine Russian cuisine without kasha, there is a proverb: “You can’t feed Russian without a kasha”.
Ancient Buckwheat Kasha recipe
Kasha was always made in earthenware crockery.
Ingredients: 4 oz buckwheat 2/3 c water 3 tbsp butter
Method: Fill 3/4 of a pot with buckwheat groats, add salt, butter. Pour over boiling water up to the top. Stir in carefully. And put into the well heated oven for 3-4 hours. One hour before finishing, cover the pot with a large pan and turn upside down. A half an hour before serving, put wet fabric round in order that kasha falls off from the pot sides. Serve with cold baked milk or butter.
Mushrooms and fried onios can be added for flavour. But it is a great meal on its own even without anything.
There is one recipe:The boiled buckwheat is russian nationality dish, we call it - GRECHNEVAYA KASHA :) it's very healthy and easy for preparing but you have to know some secret for do it :) I like to eat the boiled buckwheat with butter and sometimes with mushrooms
1 cup of buckwheat
2 cups of water
250-300 grm mushrooms (Porcino)
How to make it
add in pan buckwheat and water
water have to be above buckwheat for 1.5 cm.
boil under the lid on slow heat
and preparing till water go off (around 15-24min)
grain of buckwheat have to be soft
fry mushrooms with onion
add the mushrooms to boiled buckwheat
if you like you can mix it
26/10/2012 by Natasha M NEW
Simple desert decoration I made for my friends at work: Prunes in Dark Chocolate, Dark Chocolate with Pecan Nuts, Almonds and Walnuts Almond Apricots and Frangipane Tart Garden Flowers (not for human consumption) All cooked with Love Secret Recipe