Russia houses inhabitants that are extremely rich in culture and richer in good food. They have varieties from soups to salads, meat dishes, pancakes, pies, bread, sauces, and yummy desserts, all of which can be stepped down with wines or non-alcoholic drinks. Part of these dishes have been recognized internationally and lots of them are parts of the special reasons for higher longevity and ageless beauties in Russia.
Guess what? Further down from here is a list of 10 Russian dishes you must give a try. I have specially made this for you to understand every dish from its rich ingredients, to its spectacular taste, easy preparation steps down to how to pronounce each dish correctly. The exciting thing is that you don’t need to be in Russia to enjoy them, the ingredients are accessible almost anywhere, but that shouldn’t kill your hope of savoring them whenever you pay a visit to Russia, If you got that already, let’s delve right into it.
1. Pelmeni ( пельмeни pronounced as PEL-MI-NI)
This is a Russian dumpling with a twist! It’s not your regular dumpling. Cream in color and best served with broth or sour creme, Pelmenin is a dough with meat filling. All you need is flour, water, and egg to make a dough, get your desired meat for filling, spice mix and lightly cook them, cut your dough after rising and fill in the meat, close up the edges and boil in salty water for 7 minutes only and Voila! food is ready. It is one of the best Russian delish to replenish your energy, and the meat filling does a lot of supplement to your body system. Easy to make with a very satisfying result. You should give this a trial.
2. Borscht (борщ; pronounced as “BORE-SHD)
This is a very attractive red-colored Russian dish because of Its beetroot base, though it has green and white varieties but they are not as popular as the red-colored base. It is a soup that draws you to eat by increasing your appetite because of its good look. All you need to achieve this tempting soup feat is broth, veggies (cabbage, carrot, potatoes, onions, and tomatoes, and fermented beetroot juice. The simple steps to making this are;
« Cook your meat stock for about 2 hours (if you will be using bone broth instead, cook for 6hrs)
« Cut the beetroot and cut into two-inch strips and stew for half an hour
« Julienne your veggies separately and pre-cook
« Combine pre-cooked stock, beetroot juice with the stock, and your borsht is ready.
Though there is a constant argument about this soup being of Russian or Ukrainian origin, its benefits of controlling the blood pressure and preventing stomach, heart, and liver diseases among others would let you savor the delish and keep the arguments for later.
3. Plov (Плов pronounced with a sound of “P” before LOVE)
If there is a dish to compete with the almighty Nigerian jollof rice, then it will be the Russian Plov (alternatively spelled as pilaf). It is a dish made of chicken and rice premium mix. It encapsulates exquisite flavors that would make you want to have it over and over again. It is traditionally made with lamb but it is equally fantastic with beef and chicken, you will be needing long grain rice, chicken/lamb/beef, and veggies. Follow these few steps and have your plov ready in a few hours
« Season the meat heavily with salt and pepper and stir-fry, then set aside
« Cut your veggies (carrot onion)
« Rinse your rice thoroughly and drain
« Boil rice till tender and pour in seasoned veggies and meat. Serve with a cool drink and enjoy.
4. Solyanka (соля́нка, pronounced as SO-LI-AN-KA)
This is a thick mix of unusual blend that gives a heavenly taste. It is one of the traditional Russian soups which stands out because of its pickled veggies and is available in three variants; meat, fish, and mushroom Solyanka, it’s the perfect soup to relieve your nerves and calm your stressed system on a tiring day. To savor this relaxing soup, all you need is to follow these few steps;
« Assemble your ingredients (Bacon, meat, veggies, broth, tomato paste, lemon, and sour cream)
« Cook your bacon, lightly grill your meat, and stir fry the veggies
« Add tomato paste to the veggies and let it caramelize and add your desired spices
« Put in your meat, and pour in your broth while leaving it to simmer for ten minutes
It is best served with lemon and sour creme
5. Blini (блины, pronounced as BLI-NEE)
This is a wheat pancake that makes a mouth-watering snack. If you have access to wheat flour, salt, baking powder, and egg, you are good to go in these few steps;
« Combine your flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl, whisk your egg, butter and milk together and pour in the flour mix, and voila your batter is ready!
« Heat a tablespoon of butter in your frying pan and drop the batter one tablespoon at a time, cook until brown, and flip. It is best topped with salmon and flushed down with warm coffee or hot chocolate drink.
6. Pirozhki (пирожки́, pronounced as PEE-ROW-SKEY)
This is a very popular street food in Russia and very similar to the common Nigerian meat/fish pie. It is a snack made of yeast-leavened dough with a variety of filling. It makes a perfect snack for picnics and it’s highly nutritious. You would need flour, yeast, water, ground meat, stir-fried cabbage, mashed potatoes, and stewed fruit for its filling. Your pirozhki will be ready in the following steps
« Pour yeast in warm water and cover for a while
« Warm the milk, whisk in the eggs, and pour the mix into the flour, and add the result from step one as well, then and leave to rise
« Prepare your filling by stir-frying your ground meat, cabbage, mashed potatoes, and fried mushrooms and spice them all up
Uncover your dough and knead very well, then cut into shapes, put in your filling, and cover it up, then you can fry or bake as desired and you are good to go
7. Shashlyk-kebab (Шашлык pronounced as written”SHASH-LIK)
This is like skewed barbecued meat and a very popular rich food in Russia. Pork, lamb, and beef can be used as the meat source in this dish. And it can be simply made by marinating your meat in your preferred spices and herbs, then cover tightly. The secret to a yummy shashlyk is enough marination time, best done overnight or preferably 3–4hours. Then arrange meat into the skewer and cook on a barbecue on very high heat or use a very hot griddle pan. It is best served with sour creme.
8. Ukha (yxa, pronounced as awka)
This is a clear Russian soup with a fish base. It can be made with any variety of fish as preferred by you. The main ingredient is fish, but veggies, leeks, and potatoes can be used minimally in their preparation as well. It is prepared in the following steps.
« Make a fish broth from cooking your fish and separate fish from the broth by straining
« Cook the broth alone for a while and add veggies as preferred
« De-bone your whole fish and rove the skin as well
« Add fish to the broth mix and fresh heads to the soup and serve.
This soup is especially good for protecting brain health, fish infection, protecting the skin, and boosting anti-oxidants because of the omega-A and fatty acids that are embedded in fish.
9. Kurnik (курник pronounced as written KOOR-NIK)
This is a Russian chicken pie version made with chicken, rice, and hard-cooked eggs. The fillings give it its distinct taste and it’s prepared like a large pie as the size of a pizza. You will need flour, butter, cream, and eggs for the dough and butter, carrot, eggs chicken, rice for the filling. Your Kurnik will be ready with the following steps;
« Pulse flour salt and butter to achieve a perfect mix
« Cook your filling, melt butter and fry in onion and carrot. Add shredded chicken thighs and season while stir-frying
« Cook your rice in butter and add herbs to it then add it to the filling mix
« Rollout. a large dough and put in your fillings then add Sliced hard-boiled eggs
« Roll out another dough and cover the previous, you can make designs on the dough to make it attractive, put it in your oven, and bake.
10. Stroganoff (бефстро́ганов, pronounced as STROW-GUH-NOF)
This is a stir-fried beef that is served in a sauce with sour cream. It goes well with noodles, rice, and mashed potatoes. This is basically a beef soup that complements another food and can stand alone as dessert or appetizer. It is rich in taste and an excellent protein source. You need beef, spices, beef broth, onions and, sour cream to make this. Follow these steps to make your Stroganoff;
« Cut your beef into thin strips
« Stir-fry your mushroom
« Stir-fry your beef and onions then pour your broth in it and spice it up
« Stir your sour creme in to thicken the sauce.
These dishes should be on your list of unmissable Russian delicacies to try out. Be warned, They are addictive and you won’t ever have enough of them. Have you tried any of them before? Share your experience in the comment section.