Tourism in Russia >
"Bread and Salt" tradition for wol coming one's guests in Russia is
wall known throughout the world. The hosts present their guests with bread and
a salt shaker, which are placed onto a beautiful cloth. The guest should then
break off a piece, put some salt on it, and eat it. This signifies that the host
has offered - and you accepted - the most precious thing in the house, which is
bread. It is always present on the Russian table.
The meal begins with hot or cold broth and appetizers. The wide selection of
soups in a Russian menu is a specialty of this cuisine. In winter it is hot
soups: cabbage soup, borsch, chowder, fish soup (ukha), rassolnik and solyanka.
In summer, cold soups are more popular (they can be served as a first course,
as well as an appetizer): okroshka, bot- vinia, or beetroot soup.
This is followed by a hot meat or fish dish. Grains are a must in a Russian
meal. They can be a side dish or a main course. The meal ends with sweet pies
A rich selection of appetizers is, in a sense, the "business card"
of a Russian feast. The most famous appetizers are black and red caviar, as
well as gourmet fish types like sturgeon and salmon. Big and small pies with
fillings of all kinds can be served as appetizers (or along with other dishes).
A beautiful beetroot salad is a bright highlight among every-thing else. Its
real name is "venigret", but all around the world it is known as Russian
Salad. The Russian stove alone deserves a special mention. It was precisely
the distinctive characteristics of foods cooked in it, which predicated the originality
of national dishes. The pots never touch open flame, unlike in many European stoves
or ovens. This is where such an abundance of dishes cooked in round clay or iron
pots came from - stewed, boiled, roasted, or baked.
The samovar gets some special attention as well. This unique vessel for boiling
water first appeared in the Tula region of Russia (where a museum of many different
types of samovars is now located), and then spread all around. It is impossible
to imagine tea time in Russia without a tubby samovar - a symbol of the hearth
The samovar, the stove, the abundance of soups and appetizers, as well as the
preciousness of bread are all characteristics that give you a general idea of
what Russian cuisine is all about. But speaking about Russian cuisine as one
entity only makes sense if we take all the regional specialties into account.
Over centuries of coexisting, the national cuisines of the peoples of Russia
exchanged their experiences, mutually enriching each other. So, in the north
they like cabbage soup and in the south - borsch. The Karelian cuisine has virtually
no desert, but the Tatar cuisine is famous for its abundance. In Siberia they
boil dumplings, and in Buryatia - poses.
Various inventions of foreign chefs and other Russian gourmands have also had
their influence on the traditional cuisine. Many dishes appeared in this way:
Aspic, the Guriev Porridge, Beef Stroganoff, etc.)
In the countryside, you can enjoy national treats, and what's more is they
will be from environmentally friendly ("green") products. In addition,
restaurant menus can offer modern versions.