6 russian foods

6 Delicious Russian Foods

Travelling to amazing new places is surely great thing and I really love, but there’s something that I love even more: food. I don’t think I can ever travel to a new place and not try out local food. I come from the city of Bombay and we say that if you can stomach Bombay street food, you can eat anything, anywhere in the world. I can proudly say that I am a living testament to that belief.

When I was in Russia, I was pigging out every meal and by the end of my trip I swear I could eat Russian portions of meat. They are huge. Really huge.

Of all the delicious Russian foods I had, these are the ones I absolutely recommend:

Shashlik

Shashlik

Shashlik is the Russian word for barbeque! Picture delicious meat roasted on a coal fire. The meat sweats out some of the fat and the aroma of coal is infused beautifully in the tender meat when it is ready.  You’ve got to try this stuff. Shashliks are a perfect chow-down with some classic Russian vodka.

Blini

Blini_with_sour_cream_and_red_caviar

Pancake fans this one is for you! Russian pancakes are called ‘Blini’. They are everything you expect from a pancake. Light, fluffy and delicious, Blini are usually had with honey. Consider this as something you’d have to get your jaws moving at a Russian breakfast table.

Okroshka

Окрошка_Okroshka

Cold soup what? I never had a cold soup before. Okroshka was the perfect introduction to the whole cold soup range for me. This soup is a mixture of raw vegetables and cooked meat (usually beef) with ‘Kvaas’ a mildly alcoholic beverage made from rye bread!

Do try this out because it has a very unique taste!

Note: Kvaas is a mildly bitter drink that is very refreshing and unique in taste. You should try it for sure.

Manti/ Pelmeni

Pelmeni

Do you like dumplings? If yes, then Manti or Pelmeni is just the thing for you. Filled with beef meat, these dumplings come with a healthy sprinkle of rosemary.  They plate the dumplings with a big dollop of sour cream which goes really well with the Pelmeni.

Caviar

Caviar_butterbrot

Fish eggs. Those words made me squirm a little bit, but the idiot that I am, I decided to try it anyway. They say you have to develop a taste for caviar and I agree with them. My tryst with caviar was really eventful. You should read the complete story: (My Tryst with Caviar)

Borshch

Borshch

You may not know much about Russia, but you surely know ‘Borshch’.  It is the famous beetroot soup that is served on dinner tables across Eastern Europe. This soup is originally an Ukrainian preparation, but as they say delicious food has no boundaries.

Give these dishes try and tell me what you think.  Also, if you have already tried any of these, which one of these is your favourite?

Lastly, I’d love to know about other Russian dishes that you absolutely love in the comments!

Cheers!

food caviar

TC Original: My Tryst with Caviar

Caviar in Russia
Caviar in Russia

Eating caviar will never be as fun as the first time I tried this supposed delicacy.  Now I am a foodie inspired by the likes of Anthony Bourdain and Bear Grylls but when it came to actually trying new food, I was a bit hesitant.  It was of course the first time I stepped out of India and I had a hard time adjusting to the bland, almost tasteless food that Russia had to offer.  No don’t get me wrong, there are certain cuisines in Russia which have some hints of flavour and taste, but that’s for another blog post, I’m going to tell you about my tryst with caviar in this one.

I’m very choosy about my sea food. Living in Mumbai, I do have a large variety in terms of fish but I am snooty. I prefer eating fresh produce, found in my Uncle’s backyard in Goa.  If anyone’s ever had fresh sea food, you wouldn’t dream of having fish that has been brought in over many days from the high seas.  Moscow and Kazan, the cities I was staying in, unfortunately imported all its sea food from the coastal regions of the mammoth land mass, so fresh ‘Riba’ (Fish in Russian) was completely  ruled out.  There was however one thing that got me curious, Caviar.  Russia is famous for its caviar and I surely wanted to try it once!

Now the method of having caviar in Russia is to take a slice of bread. Plaster it with an inch of butter. Open the golden tin of caviar and scoop out the orange little balls with a spoon onto the bread and butter.  Spread this evenly and prepare to take a bite.  This was a bit difficult for me as I could smell the distinct odour of old fish.  It was I must say, extremely revolting.  I closed my nose and shoved the piece of bread in and started the awkward munching, hoping against hope that I don’t puke it out. Just when I thought the worst was over the little eggs started popping off in my mouth, oozing liquids that accentuated the taste of fish.  Now that’s where I realised it was an acquired taste.  Beer is bitter, but everybody loves that bitter tang that it imparts. I couldn’t brave myself up for another slice of bread with caviar. Enough of adventure for a day, I thought.  A fellow traveller with whom I was sharing the caviar tin with had a ball laughing at my contorted face.  Mind you I had paid 600 Roubles for a 100 gram tin of caviar.

It was a troubling experience for me honestly, but here’s the funny thing. I think I’m going to try caviar once again.  It’s not to prove a point or act even more stupid. It’s simply to relive that memory and in the process hope to may be acquire the taste.