Ready in minutes, this salad can be served as a simple and delicious appetizer. A combination of pickled cucumbers and mustard make it a bit spicy. The Russians usually go for salted cucumbers. For someone who is not used to them, salted cucumbers can be a little bit strong in taste. It's best to serve it with fresh hearty black bread with butter.
Carrots and apples are very healthy and are prepared in countless variations in the Russian cuisine. This crisp, refreshing, vitamin-rich salad is one of the classic dishes in modern Russia and is also popular among children. There are various recipes. One can use e.g. sour cream as dressing, replace walnuts by roasted sunflower seeds or add raisins.
In Russian and Ukrainian cuisine, Vatrushki (Russian: ватрушки) are small pies with an open top usually filled with sweet quark or cottage cheese. The filling can also contain fruit, berries or jam. Traditionally Vatrushki are made with yeast dough, but it is also possible to use puff pastry. This is a recipe for sweet yeast dough and three fillings: with cottage cheese, apples and berries. Quark Vatrushki are sometimes decorated with raisins.
The stuffed buns pirozhki (Russian: пирожки) are probably one of the most famous dishes of Russian cuisine. They are made of yeast dough and stuffed with meat, vegetable or fruit filling. Usually pirozhki are baked, but it is also possible to fry them. This is a recipe for basic yeast dough and three vegetable fillings. In Russia, pirozhki are served with sour cream or melted butter.
Although different varieties of asparagus grow in the European part of Russia, dishes with this delicious vegetable do not belong to the traditional Russian cuisine. Many Russians discover asparagus during their trips to Germany or Italy, find it tasty and serve asparagus at home in Russia as a fine gourmet creation. Served as a salad with tender chicken breast and white wine sauce, asparagus is usually quite popular with everyone.
Due to its high nutritional value, eggplant (or aubergine) is also called the vegetable of longevity. Eggplants are low in calories and rich in antioxidants. They boost metabolism, stimulate digestion, lower bad cholesterol and have a diuretic effect. Eggplants should not be eaten raw, but they can easily be grilled, braised or stewed. In Russian, eggplants are fondly called "синенькие" [ßínjen'kije]. This is the diminutive form of "синий" = "blue". In Russian and Ukrainian cuisine, there are many eggplant puree recipes (also called eggplant caviar). Depending on taste preferences of the region, garlic, peppers and various fresh herbs can be added to the recipe.
In Russian cuisine, potato is often used as an ingredient for salads. New potatoes with its thin skin and fine flavor would be the best choice for this refreshing salad with radishes and cucumbers. This salad is great to accompany a barbecue. It can also be taken to a picnic or simply eaten as a main dish at home.