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Russian Snacks and Starters
May 27, 2010 10:31

A distinctive feature of Russian cuisine is abundance and variety of snacks and starters. Just like in former times, it is still a custom in Russian homes to serve for the arrival of guests all kinds of dainties - sauerkraut, soaked apples, salted mushrooms and cucumbers, herring, caviar, etc. According to the Russian tradition hosts in a hospitable house welcome their guests at the door and immediately invite them to the table set out in advance.

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A variety of salads are a must on a festive Russian table: the most typical are the Russian salad, beetroot salad (vinaigrette), herring salad, etc. Before cooking of salads the ingredients are cooled down. Hot snacks are comparatively rare: the best of them moved to the category of second courses. An exception is boiled potato. Meanwhile hot snacks are the best snacks to strong drinks.



Snacks to Vodka

Traditional Russian snacks to drink vodka with are meat snacks, such as lard, ham, meat jelly, cold veal, corned beef; fish snacks, such as herring, caviar, sturgeon balyk (cured fillet), a balyk sturgeon, salmon, chum salmon, hunchback salmon, salty sprats, etc.; vegetable snacks, such as salty cucumbers, sauerkraut, fermented apples, salted tomatoes, stuffed eggplants, salted and pickled mushrooms, Russian vinaigrette, and boiled potato. Vodka goes ideally with these snacks that make ideal gastronomic supplements to it.

Snacks are extremely important for estimation of genuine taste and effect of vodka as a drink. Being rather an expensive drink, vodka demands expensive accompaniment, such as caviar, salted and smoked fish, pickled mushrooms, etc. Without nourishing and salty snacks vodka cannot unfold all its properties.

However, vodka goes well with cheaper products also, such as herring and sauerkraut. Salted cucumbers deserve special attention. According to Anton Chekhov, for two hundred years scientists racked their brains over the problem of the best snack, but one cannot devise anything better than salted cucumbers.

The humorous words contain a considerable element of truth: cucumber is really a brilliant combination with vodka, especially that it is quite cheap and widespread.

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Tags: Russian cuisine Russian Vodka    

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