Braised White Cabbage

January 29th, 2011 in Main Dishes, No-meat, Side Dish Recipes by Julia Volhina

Braised cabbage can be a nice meat-free dish on its own, however it also makes a good side dish for various meats, especially pork and sausages.

You can braise fresh white cabbage alone or mix of white cabbage with sauerkraut (1:1 proportion) to your taste. If you choose to use sauerkraut, rinse it with water before adding to the skillet.

Fresh tomatoes in this recipe can be replaced with tomato paste, if you don’t want to spend time blanching and de-seeding tomatoes.

Chicken Pilaf

January 22nd, 2011 in Chicken, Main Dishes by Julia Volhina

An easy tweak to classic pilaf recipe – chicken instead of lamb – will make this dish to shine all different colors. Chicken require less time to cook, it is more lean so, let’s say it is more healthy and also faster to prepare :)

Using whole chicken is an option, but in this case you probably need to bone it first (unless you like to chew on bones).

Take boneless thighs, if you don’t like to spend time removing bones. Chicken breasts can be used as well, but may end up being too dry – mix them up with some other parts such us thighs or so.

Another trick to this recipe is using cast-iron pan, ideally round one. It makes rice to cook more evenly which is more important part – get soft not overcooked rice.

Oladi (Russian Pancakes) with Apple

January 15th, 2011 in Main Dishes, No-meat by Julia Volhina

This recipe is a step up for russian kefir based pancakes – oladi. My mom used to add slices of apple to oladi batter and that is the way how I prefer them – oladi with apple served warm with sour cream topping.

So the recipe is quite easy: prepare oladi batter, add slices of apple and fry pancakes.

This dish is a perfect choice for breakfast or brunch, or even fast prepared snack. I bet kids would love those pancakes as well. They taste good accompanied with a glass of kefir.

Cabbage and Chicken Salad

January 8th, 2011 in Salads by Julia Volhina

I love cabbage. It is available in the stores whole year, and it somehow manages to preserve such important nutrient as vitamin C (and some others) till late winter. This makes cabbage a good choice of food when your body particularly needs more vitamins.

I consider this a winter salad: cabbage is available any time in the store, as well as chicken and cheese; but it will also taste great when prepared from fresh young cabbage, which is much softer and more juicier.

Additionally, I usually season this salad with dry bread cubes right before serving. I prepare them myself from leftover bread: just dice it and dry in the oven (can’t call them croutons, as they don’t have any seasoning or oil added in the process of preparation). But I guess you can use croutons from the shop instead or skip this part all together.

Veal Roast with Mustard and Garlic

January 1st, 2011 in Beef, Main Dishes by Julia Volhina

This veal roast is a good choice for romantic or family dinner. Meat can be prepared for cooking in advance, like a night before, and then roast day after. That will make meat even better marinated.

I think veal is the best for this recipe, but since veal is hard to get and can be quite pricey – beef can be used as well. If you choose to cook beef – increase roasting time a bit.

Veal roast can be served warm straight from the oven, as one piece or spiced into portions. It also tastes good cooled down.

Omelette with Sour Cream and Cheese

December 25th, 2010 in Eggs, Main Dishes, No-meat by Julia Volhina

Easy to do breakfast for two (or more, if needed) – omelette with sour cream seasoned with shredded cheese, chopped dill and green onions.

This omelette is good as it is, as well it can be used as a base for various stuffing.

This recipe doesn’t require flour (is gluten free); amounts of sour cream, cheese and greens can be varied to taste.

Easier Borscht with Precooked Beets and Beans

December 18th, 2010 in Hot Soups, Soup Recipes by Julia Volhina

One of the challenges when cooking classic beet root soup, borscht, is to get all vegetables (and there are quite few) cooked till perfect readiness at the same time.

Considering different vegetables require different cooking time it is sometimes hard to achieve. For borscht you need to make sure beens are soft, while potatoes are not over cooked and beets don’t lose their color.

So, to make this happen: I cook beens in a separate cooking pot (just until they are soft and ready), cook beets skin on (like for salad) in separate pot in advance, and add these two to the main cooking pot at appropriate times.

By the way, using of canned beets and beens instead of cooking them yourself is an option (which I never did, but it may safe you some time).