If you haven't tasted shchi, then you won't understand the Russian soul. Here, we'll tell you how to make this cabbage soup, and other dishes with cabbage, which are dear to every Russian. 1. Shchi
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Along with borshch, this soup made from sauerkraut is a staple first course on the Russian table. Since olden days, shchi was eaten by both rich and poor - the difference was in how thick it was and the ingredients used.
In the past, it was prepared a day before serving in order to allow it to stand and enrich the flavor. Nowadays, this is rarely done, but still the cooking takes several hours.
To make shchi, you will need beef on the bone, onion, carrots, tomato paste, potatoes and, of course, sauerkraut. Add sour cream and parsley to serve.
2. Fermented cabbage
Shredded cabbage that has been kept under a weight (even better, in an oak barrel) with carrots and cranberries is the main winter appetizer. Thanks to enzymes formed during the fermentation process, it is not only tasty but also good for digestion.
Read more: 7 foods you can pickle for the winter, Russian style
This popular Russian salad, whose name derives from the French word vinaigrette, is very easy to make. Ingredients include finely chopped cooked beetroot, potatoes, carrots, as well as sauerkraut, pickles, onion and peas. For dressing, use a mixture of sunflower oil and vinegar. Vinegret is popular thanks to its broad range of flavors, and it's often made in the winter when good quality fresh vegetables are not available.
4. Kulebyaka pie with cabbage
One of the most popular fillings for this large pie is cabbage mixed with egg and onion. Making kulebyaka is rather time-consuming, so it is usually made on special occasions.
Read more: Christmas in Tsarist-style is easy: Baking Russia's traditional 'kulebyaka' pie
5. Pirozhki with cabbage
Anyone not brave enough to tackle big sizes can bake or fry pirozhki - small buns filled with cabbage, egg and onion, or simply with cabbage. Most importantly, don't forget: There is no such thing as too many pirozhki.
This dish made with cabbage leaves, in which a meat filling is wrapped and stewed, has many admirers both in Russia and beyond its borders. If you find the process too labor intensive, you can try the "lazy" golubtsy recipe - the ingredients are practically the same but they are all mixed up.
7. Cabbage cutlets
This low calorie dish can be eaten either separately or as a side dish to accompany meat. To make it, boil shredded cabbage until half-cooked and drain the water. Gently fry finely chopped onions and carrots, and add cabbage, egg and flour. Mix everything together, add salt, and fry the cutlets coated with egg and breadcrumbs.
Bigus, or stewed cabbage and sausages, is often served in Russian canteens. Many people like the version that is served as a soup into which different types of meat, smoked sausage or other vegetables are added.
Read more: Bigus: The Polish dish on the Red Army's menu
9. Cabbage salad
The basic recipe for this salad has no ingredients other than cabbage, carrots, onion, salt and sunflower oil. To make it more interesting, just add apple, prunes, crushed walnut or thinly sliced lemon zest, according to preference.
10. Marinated cabbage with beetroot
It is convenient to use a big glass jar for this appetizer. Cut the cabbage into cubes, and thinly slice a small beetroot; put on top of the cabbage and sprinkle with grated or finely chopped garlic. Make several layers like this, and pour sunflower oil on top.
To make the marinade, add three tablespoons of salt, bay leaf and half a cup of sugar to one liter of water and bring to boil. Continue boiling for five minutes, and add half a cup of vinegar.
Then pour the marinade into the jar with the cabbage and beetroot, and leave at room temperature for at least eight hours. This appetizer should be stored in the fridge, but it keeps no longer than a month.
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