Friday, November 18, 2011

To Russia, With Love: Borscht

On our next installment of To Russia, With Love, a celebration of my Russian spam-bot visitors that have finally boosted me over 10,000 visitors since Mr. Onion's Neighborhood's first recipe post is a traditional recipe for borscht, we'll be making a wonderful soup of beets and cabbage.

Monday, November 14, 2011

To Russia, With Love: Kvass

I was hoping to start off early in the To Russia, With Love series with a borscht recipe since borscht seems to be so stereotypically Russian, but when I came upon this old recipe from a 19th century book I saw "kvass" listed as an ingredient. Indeed, a number of recipes called for it. So, anticipating I'll need it for more than just borscht I figured this would be a good one to try and make!

Kvass is a lightly fermented beverage made from a dark bread, usually rye. It's described as tasting sour and sweet, and sometimes can be slightly carbonated. The process is pretty simple: toast some bread, soak it in some water, drain it out, add some sugar and yeast, and in a couple days it's done.  I thought it might be interesting to add some flavor, so this has some berries mixed into it. (A lot of recipes I found called for raisins for some added flavor, but I used what I had on hand.) This is a multi-day project.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Pasta alla Carbonara

My good neighbors, you all know how much I love pork. I make my own pancetta, love the taste of slow cooked brined pork, and have been known to make thirty pound batches of sausage.

Carbonara is one of my favorite dishes.  It's simple, tasty, filling, and is a great way to come off looking like a great cook even if you don't think you know what you're doing. (Seriously, it's not that hard!) A quick trip to a local farmer's market and you can probably obtain most of the ingredients from local producers. Even better!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Spirits: Cuffs and Buttons, the Original Southern Comfort Liqueur

One can't live in New Orleans without, at some point, discussing alcohol. While I love a good, hearty beer, or a nice cold High Life after a hot day of working in the yard, my evenings are best ended with a nice cocktail. The only thing that can beat a good cocktail is a well crafted liqueur.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Quick Eats: To Russia, With Love: Baked Chicken Kiev

I was taking a look at the stats for Mr. Onion's Neighborhood and was surprised to see that I have a large number of Russian visitors. While I'm sure many of these are spam bots (I can never figure out what the referral sites actually are) I'd like to give a shout out to my most frequent visitors! In their honor, I'll be trying out some Russian recipes throughout the month labeled as "To Russia, With Love".

We'll start this off with a Quick Eats post, since this is a pretty basic recipe for Chicken Kiev. I learned that this is typically referred to as a Ukranian recipe, but that some have argued it is Russian in nature.