Russian Meat Dishes That Can Be So Mouthwatering
Traditionally, meat was used very little in cooking in Russia until the 17th century. In Russian cuisine, various types of meat are used – pork, beef, lamb, poultry and all types of game (boar, elk, wild duck, hare, etc.) Religious prohibitions on the use of certain types of meat are absent; refrain from meat food relies only on fasting and fasting days. Shredded meat dishes are widespread in Russian cuisine as well as various varieties of meatballs and sausages. Let us get to know some of Russian meat-based dishes that can be so mouthwatering.
The use of meat in Russian cuisine
Allowed meat is divided into game (from animals that are hunted) and slaughter (meat of livestock and poultry). The meat in Russia is usually eaten boiled or baked and served as a main course together with cabbage soup and pickles. It is customary to eat lamb, beef and poultry such as chickens, ducks and geese. The former characteristic of traditional Russian cuisine was the ban on eating veal and horse meat, but today it is practically not observed, especially with veal; as for horse meat, its consumption remains very limited.
Meat dishes are indispensable elements of Russian cuisine. But they are not served on the table all year round. This is due to religious beliefs that during the fasting, meat and fast food are not consumed, and Russians fast up to 212 days in a year. However, the most popular Russian food called pelmeni contains minced meat and is always included in the menu of every restaurant that serves authentic Russian cuisine. It’s similar to dumplings and Italian ravioli: minced meat wrapped in dough then boiled. Russian dumplings are served with or without broth, but always with butter or sour cream, various spices and sauces.
Originally, in Russia, three methods of cooking meat are used:
- Boiled in a whole piece. Used in soups and as an independent dish.
- Baked in a whole piece or shredded on a baking sheet, usually young pigs or poultry.
- Dishes from offal. These parts of the animal’s body are popular for pie fillings.
Some authentic Russian meat dishes
A few of these dishes may not sound familiar because they are traditionally Russian and can’t or difficult to be found anywhere else around the world. However, some other are quite popular and served in Russian restaurants in many parts of the globe.
1. Kolbasa (sausage)
From quite an earlier time, Easter was considered one of the greatest holidays in Russia. Very often, for the sake of such an event, Russians prepared pork meat to be served on the festive table, including amazingly tasty home-made sausages.
- lean pork 850 gr
- beef 780 gr
- fat 300 gr
- minced turkey 500 gr
- coarse salt 30 gr
- salt 30 gr
- spice 7 gr
- peppercorns 2 tsp
- ground cardamom to taste
- dried garlic to taste
- intestine 100 gr
All the meat ingredients are ground, and then mixed well with the fat and seasoning. Let it sit for a while so the seasonings seep into the meat. Meanwhile, wash the intestine well as it will be used as the sausage casing. Once cleansed, stuffed it with the seasoned meat, and then refrigerate for 24 hours before getting cooked. The sausages can be baked, boiled, or fried.
2. Meat solyanka
- Sausages 500 gr
- Chicken breast 500 gr
- Onion 2
- Tomato paste 3 tbsp
- Vegetable oil 100 ml
- Pickles 5 pcs
- Salt, pepper, spices to taste
Solyanka is cooked very much like common soup; it is only the ingredients that make it distinctive especially because of the Russian home-made sausage and the fresh sourness from the tomato paste and pickles. This meaty soup is very hearty and perfect for family meals.
3. Beef stewed with kvass
- beef 150 gr
- melted fat 10 gr
- onions 30 gr
- carrots 40 gr
- tomatoes 2
- kvass 150 ml
- crackers 20 pcs
- spices to taste
- salt to taste
Beef is cut into portions. Finely chopped carrots and onions are fried in fat, put meat in the same pan, sprinkle with salt, pepper and fry all together. At the end of the roasting, add the tomato. The meat is transferred into clay or other deep pot, add kvass, ground crackers, spices and stew until cooked. Boiled potatoes are served on the side dish.
4. Stewed bird or rabbit in sauce
- goose 330 gr
- or rabbit 185 gr
- margarine 5 gr
- tomato sauce 80 gr
- salt to taste
Fried poultry is chopped into portions, poured with tomato sauce and stewed for 15-20 minutes. When serving, pour the sauce in which the bird or rabbit was stewed to cover the meat. Side dishes could include potatoes, boiled or stewed vegetables, fried potatoes, and boiled or stewed rice.
5. Meatballs in sauce
- minced meat 115 gr
- onion 30 gr
- fat 7 gr
- wheat flour 8 gr
- sauce 80 ml
- salt to taste
Mix minced meat with onions to be cut into balls of 3-4 pcs, and then breaded in flour, fried, placed in a shallow dish in 1-2 rows, poured with sauce and stew for 7-10 minutes. Meatballs are served with the sauce in which they were stewed, and a side dish such as porridge, potatoes, or boiled. Sauces could vary among red, sour cream, or tomato.
There are actually many, many more meat dishes in Russia that could surprise you because of the unusual type of meat they use. It is fair to say that Russia is a carnivore country, although the amazing diversity makes the permission vary from region to region due to the difference of beliefs and restrictions. However, most of the dishes are irresistibly mouthwatering.
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