Russian cuisine is very original. It was formed under the influence of the following main reasons: a harsh climate (short summer, long cold winter), dependence on agriculture (long time Russia has been an agricultural country, most of the population lived in the countryside), the influence of Asia (Central Asian nations, China).
In this article we will talk about the major Russian dishes, which are the most well-known in the World.
1 Place. Пельмени – pelmEni.
Originally the word «пельмень» was formed from the Udmurt and Finno-Ugric languages ” пельнянь ” pel’n’an ‘- means “ear bread”. This dish came from cuisine of native Siberian people. And they probably got it from Chineese “wonton” “包 面”. For Siberian people (even now!) Pelmeni is very “comfortable” food – because it is convenient to store it during the long harsh Siberian winter. Pelmeni don’t spoil quickly and can be easily cooked and eat. Now in Russia it is the most common food for bachelors and those who simply are lazy to cook.
2 Place. Щи – Shchi.
It’s Russian cabbage soup. Shchi is an oldest Russian soup (it is known in Russia since 9th Century). Shchi is quite easy to prepare – you need meat bouillon, cabbage, flour, onion and spices (garlic, pepper and others). It’s well known fact that you will not get sick if you are eating shchi every day. That’s why from 10th century this soup became the most popular food in Russia. We say: “Щи да каша — пища наша.” (Shchi da kAsha — pishcha nAsha “Shchi and porrige are our food”).
3 Place. Блины – Blini.
Блины (pancake, crêpes) – blini – has always been a dish for ancient Slavic holiday – Maslenitsa (or Butter Week). Blini are round – it’s a symbol of the Sun that is starting to give warm again, symbol of the end of long Russian Winter and beginning of sunny Spring. Blini are very tasty with red caviar, salmon, sour cream, honey and etc.
4 place. Картошка – Kartoshka (potatoes).
KartOshka have been imported into Russia by Emperor Peter I The Great at the end of 17th century. During the 100 years Russian people denied to grow potatoes as an unknown product. It was even called the “Devil’s apple“. But since the 19th century potato has become a major side dish on the table of Russians. My favorite dish is fried potato with mushrooms.
5 place. Борщ – BOrshch.
It is the greatest soup ever. If you are in Russia – you need to try it in different places to understand the full gastronomic beauty for this dish. It’s well known that yesterday’s borshch is better than freshly cooked and that cold borshch is the greatest hangover cure.
6 place. Каша – Kasha.
Kasha (porridge) – because it was a main dich for centuries in agrarian Russia.
Russian cuisine may not be so tasty as the French or Italian. But, of course, in Russia you can try something that did not meet earlier. So, welcome to Russia and… bon appetit!
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