Read all about our May box!
Sushki are traditional Russian small, crunchy, mildly sweet bread rings eaten for dessert, usually with tea. It is also common practice to dunk these biscuits due to the hard crunchy texture in order to soften them up. Upon baking they often have a piece of string threaded through them and they are then hung in order to brush with a flavoured glaze of choice and this is often how they are presented in stores. This presentation is a through back to when merchants and travelers would put a string through them and hang them up somewhere to be taken off and eaten at leisure.
Black Caviar Zigulevskie
In Russia caviar is referred to as “Black Gold” and not oil like elsewhere around the world. Despite its humble beginnings when caviar was thrown away due to its overabundance. However in today’s world with the increasing demand and the result of overfishing, the food source became much rarer and as a result, drove the price up. With a 250g jar now worth upwards of £80 each, it is now one of the most luxurious commodities around the world. In 2007 Russia banned the harvest and sale of wild black caviar due to the threat that overfishing was posing to the quality of caviar being produced. The want for caviar in Russia did not stop however and as it was a staple of that countries diet many manufacturers began producing caviar flavoured items. We want to give you a taste of that with our black caviar flavoured Zigulevskie.
Russian for “well-spiced,” pryaniki are made with an irresistible combination of honey, brown sugar, and gingerbread spices. These are the oldest Russian sweet and have undergone many changes, especially in their texture and spicing, since their original form. As with most old dishes, each district – even family – has their own recipe. However, the most classic version is a cake-like spicy gingerbread still made in the city of Tula. The cookies are often frosted, filled with jam or with aromatic flavourings such as banana and vanilla, and have been known to (somehow) survive long enough to wind up in the Leningrad Ethnographic Museum.
Masha and the Bear
Masha and the Bear is a Russian TV show which has now been translated into 25 languages and broadcasts in over 100 countries. Based on a real-life Russian girl who was of an outgoing nature she would interact with tourists, the shows created noticed that after a couple of days the same tourists were actively hiding from the young girl due to her outgoing nature. The cartoon became such a popular brand that it was used to promote food items, something which is rare in Russia, such as sweets and in this case gingerbread.
If you want to find the crossroad where healthy meets tasty, then try Russian oatmeal cookies. They are made with Hercules oat flakes. These unprocessed flakes bear the name of the Ancient Greek hero because it was easier to persuade children to eat oat porridge if it had the name of a great hero. The oatmeal cookie was called “a soldiers’ cookie,” as the soldiers themselves invented the oatmeal cookie recipe from their provisions. Another theory claims that oatmeal cookies first appeared thanks to the soldiers’ wives, who sent them to the front. Whatever the truth, the cookie preserved its freshness even after a long journey, which was crucial for hungry troops during wartime.
Similar to other wafer biscuits we have included in our previous boxes they are light and crunchy, with a smooth hazelnut filling. The wafers were first produced in Italy in the 19th Century as part of the expansion to the ice cream industry. The use of them in the Soviet Unions was due to families being able to purchase the wafers and make sweet fillings without the need of baking them. This allowed families to make quick desserts at a relatively low cost