Russian cuisine’s rich and varied character derives from the vast and multicultural expansion of Russia. Its foundations were laid by the peasant food of the rural population, in an often harsh climate, with a combination of fish, poultry, mushrooms, berries and honey. Crops of rye, wheat, barley and millet provided the ingredients for an excess of breads and pancakes. Tasty soups, stew, fish, and meat were staples in almost every household in Russia.
The traditional Russian drink (in spite of stereotypes) is kvass. Kvass is the main ingredient in okroshka, it tastes especially good on hot summer days.
In autumn – the season of reaping the harvest– vinaigrette becomes very popular (a salad made from cooked vegetables and sauerkraut, which is very rich in vitamins.)
In winter, when our body needs to resist the Russian frosts, meat becomes a very suitable food for lunch.
Russian lunch always contains potatoes: mashed potatoes, fried potatoes, jacket potatoes, potato cakes.
Fish is also very popular: fried fish, backed fish, fish soup.
For cold snacks, you can try Russian cucumbers with honey. A bit unusual but quite delicious!
Baked goods make a great dessert: in Russia we have different kinds of pancakes and cakes. The baked apples are not to be missed. Don’t forget about Russian honey, jams and stewed fruit.
Russians have adopted many dishes from the other countries, e.g. Ukrainian curd dumplings, chebureks (a mutton pie eaten in the Crimea and the Caucasus), oriental dumplings. These dishes are considered to be really Russian now.
The New Year’s meal is a special occasion in Russia. No Russian can imagine New Year without pelmeni, herring salad, New Year cake and alcoholic drinks (champagne – for women and – finally – vodka for men). And though it doesn’t fully correspond to tradition, each Russian will tell you – this is the most common example of Russian New Year food!