Steve’s house, Streatham
17 June 2012
A special occasion this, since we had our first-ever guest chef – Steve’s Belarussian friend Alina. She proposed the following menu:
As starter, Draniki with sour cream: http://www.belarusianfood.com/2009/05/draniki.html
This, says Alina, is the iconic Belarussian dish. She served it with a side order of grechka, fried onion and mushrooms. Very nice indeed, a promising start.
For main: Kalduni, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalduny, but a modern variation of it, using mashed potato instead of unleavened dough, and baked instead of boiled, and with a minced meat filling. This turned out OK in the end, though it didn’t look so good during preparation.
For dessert: Syrniki, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syrniki, which were served with raspberries, blueberries and cream. Delicious.
Finally there was a rum-and-orange cocktail Krambambula, the signature Belarussian drink.
Alina explains: “Belarussian cuisine is heavily potato, buckwheat, dairy and mushroom-based, so these dishes would be a fair representation of what’s been going on food-wise for generations. Salads in Belarus tend to be quite plain, just some vegetables cut in pieces with a dash of oil and vinegar or sour cream.”