Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Ukrainians love soup--and hardly a day goes by that they don't eat some. And it's not Campbells, out of the can, but homemade. Most familiar is a red borscht, but when I visited Anya's family's dacha, her mother Luda made a delicious soup, okroshka, also called white borscht. It was served cool (by being kept in the root cellar) and the ingredients included buttermilk, cucumbers, potatoes, hard-boiled egg and spring onions. Perfectly light and refreshing on a hot day.
Interestingly, Anya tells me that in Russia, there is also a soup called okroshka, but it is very different--made with kvas (a fermented beverage made from dark bread) and dried fish. I'm sure it's tasty, but Luda's homemade Ukrainian version was great. Although now they eat it at the start of summer because cucumbers are always available in markets, Anya remembers when it was almost a celebration--the dish made when the first cucumbers arrived in the garden.