In Moscow, temperatures can drop as low as -30C in the winter and other parts of Russia are even colder. Because of this, Russian food is hearty with pastries, bread, potatoes and sour cream as staples as well as warming soups.
Here we are going to give you our choice of the top 10 Russian foods and end with recipes for Russian salad.
Russian food – pickles
Russian pickles are very popular. Summer is short in Russia, but there are plenty of vegetables produced during this time; too many to eat while they are fresh. The answer is to pickle them in either salt or vinegar.
Our second choice is soup, Shchi. It is is a very popular cabbage soup in Russia. It can have the addition of meat, but this isn’t compulsory. When the sauerkraut is used instead, the soup is called sour shchi. If soups based on sorrel, spinach, nettle, and similar plants are called green shchi.
Blinis are the Russian version of French crepes. They can have either savory or sweet fillings. For savory blinis, buckwheat is used and for sweet, white flour. Blinis can be very upmarket and can be served with red salmon or black sturgeon caviar.
Russian salad is one of Russia’s most famous exports and it is enjoyed all over the world. Amongst other ingredients, it contains diced potato, peas, pickles, eggs, some type of meat and mayonnaise.
Salted or smoked salmon and salted herrings are very popular. Smoked salmon is often served with blinis, while salted herrings usually appear in salads. Shuba has salted herrings covered with boiled and grated vegetables, beets, onions, and mayonnaise.
Shashlik is roasted meats and fish on skewers. They are similar to Turkish shish kebabs, but the pieces of meat are bigger. They typically use lamb, beef, chicken, and salmon. The skewers are usually served with Russian pickles and unleavened bread.
Dumplings – Russian Food
Dumplings are a very popular Russian dish. They are usually filled with pork, beef or lamb. They can be eaten as they come or with a broth poured over them.
Mini pies or pirozhki
Mini pies or pirozhki are similar to dumplings, but they are encased in pastry. There are even vegetarian versions of these with fillings like cheese, egg, potato, and cabbage. You can also get sweet versions.
Stroganoff is a very tasty and creamy dish and it’s not made anywhere as well as in Russia. You can find the most amazing varieties of mushrooms in Russia which are used in stroganoffs and they use interesting game meats. Then, of course, it is served with a dollop of delicious Russian sour cream.
Solyanka is another heartwarming soup that is thick, spicy, sour and rich. It is made with sausage or beef, olives, cucumber pickles, tomatoes, and spices. It is topped with dill and parsley. Dill is a very common herb used in Russian food cooking.