Russian winter table was in no way inferior to other seasons due to the talents and efforts of Russian women.
The features of the climate in Russia allowed farming only a few months of the year, and also contributed to the invention of new methods of food preservation. A long cold winter, accompanied by Orthodox Lent was not for ancestors a season of struggle and survival. Russian women could so skillfully store products and rationally allocate them that throughout the whole winter food was not only delicious, but also good for you.
Hot First Dishes and Drinks
A winter table in Russia is impossible to imagine without hot soups, cabbage soup and borscht. Before Christmas people mostly cooked light soups–using water with vegetables and cereals. Basis of a lent table was mushroom soup, cabbage soup and ukha. After Christmas, when it was permitted to eat meat, soups were made using a fatty meat broth. At that time to the traditional cabbage soup were added rassolnik and solyanka. In winter, all first dishes were served only hot as they were aimed at warming up the body.
For a long time in Russia people did not drink tea. It was completely replaced by sbiten. These drinks were prepared on the basis of honey, herbs and spices, and always enjoyed while hot.
Porridge, Baking Goods and Meat
Porridge was the main course of a Russian table at any season of the year. Of each kind of grain people made several types of cereals and also flour. In winter a cabbage soup was served with stuffed pies. During lent fillings were made of vegetables or berries, and after Christmas –of meat and fish.
Winter meat eating started after Christmas, when the last “meat” cattle were killed. It was a time of feasting up until the beginning of Lent, which was contrasted with the most meager diet.
Russian winter caused the emergence of new, unique only to Russia ways of storing products.
The most popular way of storing products was pickling of apples, pears and berries. According to scientists, by their nutritional value pickled apples are on par with kefir and yogurt.
In many Russian villages there are still used ancient ways of storing products for winter.
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