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Pies with viburnum

There is no Ukraine without willow and viburnum! As well as without fragrant and healthy pies with viburnum. Our ancestors knew about the healing properties of this berry and used it not only in medicine but also as a delicious filling for pies.

The main secret of the Ukrainian housewives was the specific timing of collecting viburnum. It was collected after the first frosts, because it is due to the cold that the characteristic bitterness disappears from the berry. The ancient recipe for pies with viburnum is almost never used today. And it's a pity! After all, viburnum contains a huge amount of vitamin C, which has an immunostimulatory and antiviral effect on the body.

How to cook?
Borsch with pampushkas

Borsch is a signature dish of Ukrainian cuisine, which is greatly enjoyed all over the world. The dish has dozens of variations, due to the wide geography of Ukrainians. The most common are red, green, mushroom, cold borsch and other variations.

The etymology of the word "borsch" comes from the name of the borschivnik plant and literally means “notch, tip". After all, the leaves of this plant were originally used to make borsch. Much later, potatoes and beets came to Europe and Ukraine, without which it is difficult to imagine the main dish of Ukrainian cuisine today.

Ingredients for borscht vary significantly depending on the region of Ukraine. For example, in Podillia housewives add beans to a dish, in the Poltava region — dumplings, in the South — flour, and in Slobozhanshchina there is a variation of borsch with beer.

How to cook?
Kruchenyky

The best meat is pork, the best fish is flax. This proverb aptly describes the attitude of Ukrainians to meat, and especially pork. It is impossible to imagine authentic Ukrainian cuisine without gourmet meat dishes. One of these original meat dishes is kruchenyky, or zavyvantsi.

The name of the dish is unpretentious and comes from the word “twist" (krutyty): to cook kruchenyky, the filling must be twisted into meat. By the way, both the filling and the meat can be different, it all depends on the region.

How to cook?
Poltava halushky

Are there many dishes in the world monuments to which are erected? It is halushky that have their monument! Not to mention the title of one of the symbols of the Ukrainian national cuisine.

Haluchky are a dish made of boiled dough without filling. They serve as a separate dish or soup ingredient. Despite its apparent simplicity, halushky are a very nutritious dish. Previously, they were prepared from a mixture of buckwheat and wheat flour. Simple dough made of flour, salt and water was kneaded, rolled out and cut into strips. If the dough was plucked from the strip by hand, the halushky were called "pinched", and if cut with a knife, then "torn". Regarding the origin of the word "halushky", the most probable version is the origin of the word "halka", ie "pebble stones", "glob".

And although halushky are common throughout Ukraine, it is in Poltava that they are considered the main local dish.

How to cook?
Deruny

Kremzlyky, tertyukhy, rysylovanyky, terchanyky, potato pancakes or simply deruny are cooked under different names in the regions of Ukraine. This dish is especially popular in the northern and eastern regions of the country. The very name "deruny" comes from the method of cooking: its main and constant ingredient is grated, or, as they say, "derty" potatoes. Other components may vary according to the traditions of the region or individual family. In particular, onions, garlic, flour, oil, and сan be added to the dish.

Traditionally, potato pancakes were cooked on Sundays and eaten for breakfast or dinner. They were often served at a festive table on holidays such as the Annunciation.

How to cook?
Chicken Kyiv

Chicken Kyiv has been a calling card of the Ukrainian capital for many years. It is known and loved in all parts of the world. The peculiarity of the dish is that it is prepared not from minced meat, but from a whole piece of chicken fillet.

Despite the eloquent name of the dish, other countries claim its authorship. According to one version, her homeland is France, according to another — it’s the US. In particular, according to the "French" theory, the chicken fillet cutlet was invented by chef Nicolas Appert. The recipe was taken out of France by chefs sent there by Empress Elizabeth to study. But the Americans claim that Chicken Kyiv is called so in Kyiv because of the popularity of the dish among migrants from Ukraine.

How to cook?
Banosh

Banosh, or banush, is a traditional dish of Hutsul cuisine. It is a viscous corn porridge cooked in cream or sour cream, seasoned with cheese, cracklings or porcini mushrooms. It is considered a calling card of Zakarpattia, because banosh is served there in almost every restaurant. And, of course, it is cooked in every family.

Although banosh is a very simple dish, there are many important details in its preparation. For example, according to tradition, this dish should be prepared by a man. This is explained by the fact that sheep cheese was used in the preparation, and all dishes related to sheep are prepared only by men. Another peculiarity includes  dishes for banosh. It is believed that real banosh can be cooked only in a cauldron on an open fire, and porridge can be stirred only with a wooden spoon. Of course, not every household has the opportunity to cook a meal outdoors, but if you have such an opportunity - be sure to use it!

How to cook?
Varenyky

Varenyky are Ukrainian national dish that is not inferior in popularity and importance even to borscht. Varenyky are made from fresh dough and a variety of fillings, such as meat, potatoes, mushrooms, vegetables, fruits, cheese and many more. Their fillings can be salty or sweet, lean or meaty. Recipes vary greatly depending on the region. Thus, in Polissia, crushed beans are added to the filling, in Zakarpattia  it is cheese, in Chernihiv region bacon crisps are added to the dish.

Varenyky also have important folklore and even magical significance. Our ancestors invested great symbolism in this dish. The shape of the varenyky resembles the new moon, so the dish was used as a sacrificial offering. The process of kneading the dough was identified with the origin of the universe, and the filling symbolized the continuation of the genus. Dumplings were a must-have dish at important events. For example, girls brought varenyky to recently delivered women. People ate this dish also when the cow was calving to keep the calf healthy. Varenyky were eaten during the harvest, while people believed that this food should give inspiration and strength to the reapers.

How to cook?
Galician cheesecake

Halytsky, or Lviv cheesecake is a favorite dessert in many Ukrainian families. Its creator is considered to be the legendary cook Daria Tsvek. A girl from an intelligent family was taught from an early age the intricacies of setting the table and cooking delicious meals. This knowledge later formed the basis of her cookbooks, which are still popular among housewives.

In the bestseller "Sweet Cookies", Ms. Daria shared a recipe for Galician cheesecake.

How to cook?
Bograch

Bograch is a traditional Hungarian goulash prepared by housewives in Transcarpathia. Researchers believe that the name of the dish comes from the Hungarian name of the cauldron. Bograch was invented by shepherds. Going to graze cattle, they put a variety of food in a cauldron: meat, lard, vegetables. Then they cooked it all on an open fire for a long time and always added paprika.

Traditional bograch is prepared in the open air in a large cauldron. Most of the ingredients vary from house to house, but the large amount of meat (3 to 5 types) and the generous use of paprika remain the same. The various types of meat are used: the necks, the ribs, the skin, and even the fat from the bones and hooves. The finished dish should look like goulash, not soup, so be careful with the dish.

How to cook?
Donbas-style Golyashka (pork knuckle)

One of the most popular dishes of eastern Ukraine, along with beet soup, and okroshka is Donbas-style pork knuckles (golyashka). This is the part of the pig’s leg where the foot connects with the shoulder or hip, baked in foil or dough. Interestingly, in the days of Russia, knuckles were not cooked as a separate dish, rather used for soups or jellies. And the tradition of coocking knuckles came from Europe only in the 18th century. Later, Donbas-style pork knuckles (golyashka) became one of the key dishes on the holiday table. Moreover, two or three people may well be satisfied with one knuckle.

How to cook?
Hrechanyky (Buckwheat Cutlets)

Hrechanyky is a traditional dish of Ukrainian cuisine, especially popular in the Lemko region. In fact, these are boiled buckwheat cutlets. They can be lean, but usually still contain minced meat. Mixing meat with buckwheat was invented to make the dish cheaper, but at the same time preserve both taste and nutritional value.

Hrechanyky that include meat should not be mixed up with other dishes that have the same name. For example, in the Poltava region, hrechanyky referred to dumplings, the dough for which was made of buckwheat flour. In addition, hrechanyky can be a dish that resembles pancakes made of buckwheat flour.

How to cook?
Kapusnyak (Cabbage soup)

Cabbage soup, or kapusnyak is a traditional dish of Ukrainian cuisine, made of sauerkraut. Cabbage ingredients can vary by region. It can be vegetarian, or with meat, fish or mushrooms. But in any case, the dish has a special sour taste, typical of sauerkraut.

The components of cabbage soup also vary depending on the season. During Lent or Fast, the dish was prepared without meat, with the addition of vegetable oil. In winter and on holidays, the broth for cabbage soup is made of fatty parts of pork. In the early twentieth century, when tomatoes began to be actively cultivated, they were also added to the dish.

How to cook?
Dolma

Dolma, or Tolma is a common dish among the peoples of the former Ottoman Empire. In Ukraine, dolma is cooked in Bessarabia, and the dish is an integral part of traditional Crimean Tatar cuisine.

Translated from Turkish, the name of the dish literally means "stuffed", so sometimes the word "dolma" is used to denote any stuffed dish. But the classic dolma is minced meat wrapped in grape leaves. It can be served hot or cold, as a main course or snack.

And the dish is very healthy. First, minced dolma is not fried, so more nutrients are stored. Secondly, grape leaves during cooking emit essential oils that have a healing effect on the body.

How to cook?
Sprat rissoles

Odesa is one of the few cities in the world where an original cuisine has been formed. Most dishes are a symbiosis of Ukrainian, Jewish, Greek, Bulgarian and other cuisines. At the same time, the residents of Odesa are big connoisseurs of fish. And not only sea fish, but also river ones. Especially if the fish is caught in the Danube. So it is not surprising that sprat rissoles are one of the favorite dishes in this region.

And although in Ukraine it is widely said: "Fish is not bread, you will not be full of it", this proverb definitely does not apply to delicious and hearty sprat (or monkey goby) rissoles! This dish is both useful and nutritious, and easy to prepare. Not to mention the fact that it is delicious! After all, can people cook badly in Odesa?

How to cook?
Eggplants in the Kherson style

Kherson region is known for its vegetables and fruits. No wonder many delicious dishes from the simplest products were invented here. One of the most popular is eggplants in Kherson style. This recipe can be used to prepare an appetizer for the holiday table. And if you change the recipe a little — you will get a great option for seaming for the winter.

Just a few decades ago, it was not possible to buy fresh vegetables in the winter. But they are necessary for the organism, and they taste good! Therefore, the hostess did a variety of canning for the winter. In the Kherson region, where many aubergines are grown, eggplant preservation was especially popular.

How to cook?
Gombovtsi

Gombovtsi is a little-known dish of Ukrainian cuisine, which remains quite common in Transcarpathia. This dessert is interesting because its recipe is almost identical to the national Chinese dish baoji. Therefore, some researchers believe that the roots of Gombovtsi should be sought in the era of nomadic lifestyle.

This dessert is small pies stuffed with the sweet and cooked on a steam. Fruits or berries are usually added to pies, but not necessarily. An integral part of Gombovtsi, without which this dish is impossible to imagine, are breadcrumbs.

How to cook?
Shpundra with kvas

Shpundra is a festive meat dish, known mainly in Western Ukraine.

Although this dish is not very common in everyday life anymore, it is as important as borscht and dumplings. It was even mentioned in "Aeneid" by Ivan Kotlyarevsky: "There was borsch and shpundra with beets"

How to cook?
Vilkivskyi soup

Vilkivskyi soup is a fish dish of Bessarabian cuisine. The name of the soup comes from the name of the village Vilkovo, known as "Ukrainian Venice"

This dish is always served during the gastronomic festival "Danube Feasts", which is traditionally held in the Vilkovo village. In 2018, the record of Ukraine was set here: the chefs prepared as much as 5 tons of Vilkivskyi soup!

How to cook?
Kalatusha

The term "kalatusha" in Polissya refers to a dish that combines seemingly incompatible ingredients. For example, mushrooms and fish.

How to cook?
Okroshka (cold kvas soup)

Okroshka is a traditional cold soup made mainly in eastern Ukraine.

The origin of okroshka is an open question, because no reliable historical evidence on this subject has survived to the date. However, most historians associate the appearance of okroshka with the baptism of Kievan Rus. According to the chronicles, after the act of baptism, Prince Vladimir ordered to distribute to the peasants "food, honey and kvas." Probably, after that kvas became widespread among commoners. Together with black bread and green onions, it became the basis for cold soup.

But the word "okroshka" became widespread only in the early twentieth century. It indicates the method of cooking okroshka: all the ingredients need to be finely chopped. By the way, almost anything can be the component of cold soup. Basic ingredients are cucumber, radish and green onion.

How to cook?
Lagman

Lagman is a traditional oriental dish. In Ukraine, lagman has become widespread in the Crimean Tatar cuisine.

What is a lagman? Depending on the method of preparation, it can be soup or main course. It all depends on how much broth you add to the dish. The word "lagman" itself means "stretched dough", because to make this soup one must use homemade noodles.

Due to the fact that the dish is widespread, there are many recipes and ways to cook lagman. It can be with or without meat, hot or cold.

How to cook?
Velyatynska Dzyama

Dzyama is a Transcarpathian dish, which is traditionally prepared on Easter. The fact is that the main ingredient of Dzyama is shovdar — smoked pork ham. It is traditionally placed in an Easter basket next to Easter eggs and Easter cake.

Interesting fact that in the "Ukrainian language dictionary" edited by Borys Hrinchenko, dzyama is defined as beef broth, although pork is used in the dish.

How to cook?
Pasulya pidbyvana

Pasulya pidbyvana — a traditional soup of Transcarpathian cuisine. The word "pasulya" in the region refers to the ordinary beans, so it is not difficult to guess the main ingredient of the dish.

In addition to beans, the dish must include milk. These two products were widespread in the region and available to ordinary peasants. Wealthier people added smoked and other meat to the beans.

How to cook?
Kosash—levesh

Kosash—levesh is a traditional Transcarpathian soup. It was usually prepared on Easter or immediately after it.

What makes this dish festive? It was made using the broth that remained after cooking shovdar — smoked pork ham. Shovdar was traditionally made for Easter. Accordingly, at the same time it was possible to prepare kosash—levesh soup. Otherwise, it was made from any smoked meat, but such version can not be considered authentic.

How to cook?
Mushroom gravy

Mushroom gravy is a traditional sauce on the Christmas table. It is served with dumplings, stuffed cabbage (holubtsy) and other main dishes.

Mushroom season in Transcarpathia lasts all year round. Mushrooms are dried or frozen to later prepare delicious meals. Almost any mushroom is suitable for watering, and, of course, the taste and color of the dish will depend on their choice. Watering from dried white mushrooms tastes best.

How to cook?
Yokai bob-levesh

Yokai bob—levesh is a fragrant rich soup, traditional for the diet of the Western Ukraine inhabitants. In the classic version, this dish is served in a bread plate.

The dish is named after the Hungarian writer and politician of the XIX century Mora Yokai. Over the decades, the recipe has changed, every housewife has her own secrets of cooking this soup. Several ingredients remain unchanged: paprika, smoked meat, sour cream and beans.

How to cook?
Golubtsi

In general, golubtsi or stuffed cabbage are known in the different cuisines: Greek, Eastern European, Kazakh, Turkish, but they all have some differences. Even in Ukraine there is no common traditional recipe and Ukrainian golubtsi differs depending on the region. For example, millet was mainly used as a filling, but depending on the region it was often replaced by corn grits or buckwheat. On the Left Bank of Dnipro river and in the southern regions, stuffed cabbage was made large, using the whole cabbage leaf, though in the West it was considered as a sign of a lazy host, and the cabbage leaf was divided into several parts. Cabbage (steamed or pickled) was first stuffed with cereals, fried onions and pork greaves. Meat was added only on holidays.

Golubtsi was stuffed in the oven with meat soup and sour cream or with kvass, if it was a fasting season. In the 1920s and 1930s, cabbage rolls changed to the version that is more familiar to us today: with rice and meat filling and tomato paste. Stuffed cabbage was usually an everyday dish, but in some right-bank regions it was traditionally served at a festive table.

How to cook?
Roast with mushrooms

Roast meat is traditionally meant to be meat baked in an oven. Later, the name was extended to vegetables and potatoes baked in the oven or on the stove with meat. There are many variations of baked goods. They depend on the season, the region and, of course, the preferences of the host. The forests of the northern regions are rich in mushrooms, so the latter are a common ingredient in a number of dishes. Traditional roast made from vegetables, meat and mushrooms is no exception.

How to cook?
Mazuryky

Mazuryky are a traditional Ukrainian dish, that is a small turkey sausage with cheese and butter. They were most common in northwestern Ukraine, especially in Volyn. Usually served with potato garnish in the form of boiled potatoes or deruny (potato pancakes).

How to cook?
Baba-sharpanyna

Baba-sharpanyna is a traditional Ukrainian freshwater fish casserole. This dish is over two centuries old. Ivan Kotlyarevsky even mentioned it in his notable work «Eneida» as one of the delicacies on the table of the king Latinus. The name is associated with the word «sharpaty» meaning to tear to pieces. Traditionally, baba-sharpanyna was prepared from ram or chub. Pike perch was sometimes used for holiday treats.

How to cook?
Palushky

This dish is known by many names: sticks, fingers, lazy dumplings, cats - all these are the names of potato dumplings. It is a traditional dish made of potato dough, which is boiled in the form of elongated pieces resembling fingers. The dish has become especially popular in the western regions of Ukraine.

How to cook?
Tovchanka

Tovchanka is one of the most common side dishes in Ukrainian cuisine. It is believed that it comes from the Ternopil region and is a puree of boiled potatoes and beans that are cooked separately and then pounded (Ukrainian: "tovchut"). Hence the name of the dish comes. The third main ingredient in the mash is poppy seeds. In addition to beans, other legumes can sometimes be used.

How to cook?
Pike perch in Kyiv style

Most people have heard about the Chicken Kyiv, but not everyone knows about the existence of the capital's fish delicacy. Pike perch  à la Kyiv is a fish baked with potatoes and cheese in a creamy mushroom sauce. Local housewives have been cooking it for over half a century. And this is only the first entry in a cookbook, published in 1965 and entitled "A book about delicious and healthy food." In fact, cooking this dish started earlier. In general, fish dishes occupied an honorable place in the diet of Kyiv natives. Which is not surprising, because the city is located on the banks of one of the largest rivers in Europe, which has long been famous for fish resources.

How to cook?
White mushrooms à la Hutsul

In the menu of Western Ukrainian cuisine, a place of honor belongs to mushroom dishes, especially white ones. They are cooked, fried, stewed, and are used to cook soups, sauces, etc. In the Hutsul region it was and still is quite common to cook mushrooms in sour cream sauce.

How to cook?
Skybka

Skybka or slice or, as it is also called, banky (emphasis on the last syllable) or "turnip baked on a spur" (Rakhiv style) is one of the typical dishes of Zakarpattia cuisine. It was often prepared by housewives both during the fasting season and in other seasons. It is very simple, because for its preparation, in fact, you need only one ingredient - potatoes, which are fried on a heated cast iron surface of the oven - called shpora or shparguty. In fact, this way you can fry not only potatoes, but also other vegetables or even meat. By the way, this dish inspired the Zakarpattia artist Jan Potrogosh to create a designer author's grill for cooking culinary masterpieces in this way.

How to cook?
Perekladenets

Perekladanets in Ukrainian cuisine usually means dessert, which is a cake of many cakes smeared with different fillings. In general, the word "perekladanets "or sandwich cake was used for multi-layered closed sandwiches, popular in Ukrainian, Polish and Swedish cuisines. Sweet perekladanets are most often prepared with nut, poppy seed filling or jam.

How to cook?
Verhuny

Verguny is a traditional Ukrainian cookie made of fresh unleavened dough, fried in oil. Depending on the regions, the dough and shape of the cookies could differ. For example, traditionally the dough was cut into small rhombuses, then an incision inside was made and the dough was wrapped inside the incision. Also verguny could be cooked in the form of rolls or roses. In the Kyiv version of verguny, in addition to the standard components, rum and almonds were added, in the Konotop version - lemon peel, and so on.

Verguny are often prepared for the holidays, even those that fell during the period of fasting: the girls baked them at the party, the hostess cooked them for Christmas and for the carol-bells singers, the grandmothers - for the grandchildren.

Recently, a museum dedicated to verguny was even opened in the village Chechelevo, Poltava region, where you can learn about the origin of this dessert and the stories associated with it. In addition, the owner of the museum teaches guests to cook traditional cookies

How to cook?
Gamula

More than a century ago, thick first courses were called gamula, but apple gamula is a simple ancient dessert, the recipe of which was passed down by Ukrainian housewives from generation to generation. It was most often prepared in autumn with the onset of frost, when the stove was lit in the houses. Gumula was most often made from soft and beaten apples, as they could not be stored in cellars. This dessert was usually served with honey or tea, so it was prepared mostly without sugar.

How to cook?
Lviv plyatsky

Traditionally, pastries in Galicia were called plyacky. They are baked in a large square shape and then cut into pieces. They usually combined cakes, cream and fillings. It resembles a cake, but easier to prepare. Now the most popular Lviv dessert, without a doubt, is Lviv cheesecake. It is believed that the original recipe was invented in the middle of the twentieth century by the famous chef Daria Tsvek and was published in her book "Sweet Cookies". But every housewife has her own vision, and now there are more than 30 recipes for Lviv cheesecake.

How to cook?
Kyiv cake

The history of the sweet symbol of the Ukrainian capital and one of the most famous national desserts and souvenirs dates back more than 60 years. There are two main versions of its creation. First, the confectioners of the Karl Marx Factory forgot to put egg whites for the biscuit in the refrigerator. To cover up the incident, the factory manager and his assistant smeared the frozen cakes with butter cream, decorating the cake with cream flowers. According to another story, the recipe for the Kyiv cake has been developed for a long time and finally got approval in 1956. The following year, the dessert won bronze at the confectionery competition, and a year later won first place. The recipe was patented only in 1973.

Periodically, confectioners experiment with technology and ingredients, but the base has remained unchanged since 1956: cakes layers are made with fermented proteins.

By the way, before the confectioners of the factory had their own unique "cream handwriting", but to avoid forgery, the picture on the cake was standardized.

During the Soviet era, "Kyiv Cake" was a delicacy. You could buy it only in the capital, and the queue had to be occupied at 4 am!

And this dessert of 70 cake layers weighing more than 5 kg served as a gift of Ukrainians to Brezhnev for the 70th anniversary. The Secretary General praised the gift, but the original recipe of the Kyiv cake is still known only to confectioners of the Roshen factory.

How to cook?
Chernihiv Pancakes

Crepes have been known in Slavic cuisine since pre—Christian times. They were associated with the sun and the god of fertility — Jarylo. In general, the word "crepe" meant a cake made of ground flour. Buckwheat, wheat, corn flour, millet or even semolina were used for their preparation. Crepes were eaten plain or with a variety of fillings. The latter in Ukrainian cuisine are called pancakes. Traditionally, pancakes were filled with cottage cheese, poppy seeds, jam, apples, berries, meat, mushrooms, cereals, etc. The recipe of the dough and fillings varied depending on the regions. In the Chernihiv region, pancakes were stuffed with cottage cheese or poppy seeds and baked with butter in an oven.

Pancakes are considered a traditional dish for the holiday of Shrovetide, and also for Autumn Fathers in Volyn, which was at the end of October and symbolized winter changing autumn.

How to cook?
Compote

Compote is a traditional drink of Eastern European peoples, including Ukrainians. It is prepared from fruits and berries with sugar. Can be prepared from fresh, dryed (uzvar), canned or frozen fruits and berries. With the spread of freezers in households since the second half of the twentieth century the latter option has gained popularity.

Compote could be prepared from one type of berries or fruits, or from their mix. Apples, strawberries, cherries, raspberries, apricots, plums, and grapes were most often used in Ukraine.

In Soviet times, compote was also called a dessert, which was a berry (fruit) cooked in compote. They were served chilled in glasses or cups.

How to cook?
Beet kvas

Today, beet kvass is rather strange, but in fact it is an unfairly forgotten drink that our ancestors drank more than a thousand years ago. Well—known Ukrainian chef Yevhen Klopotenko believes that the history of this drink dates back to the ninth century, when the Scandinavian princes Rurikovich came to Russia. Beets were then quite common in our lands and in Scandinavia. But in Russia, beets could not be stored for long due to hot summers and later people came up with fermenting beets, making kvass from it.

It was prepared in the fall, during harvest and stored until spring, until new beets grow. Kvass was fermented under pressure in wooden barrels, which were placed in the cold.

The drink quenched thirst in summer, was used for medicinal purposes, because it is rich in vitamins, iodine, iron. In addition, beet kvass was the basis for many traditional dishes, cold soups and even borscht. Kvass prepared by natural fermentation (without the addition of yeast) can be consumed within several months with gradual adding of water.

How to cook?
Mead

The honey—based drink is perhaps the oldest known Slavic alcoholic beverage. Honey as a drink was incredibly popular in the days of Kievan Rus, when no feast or reception was held without it. Only during Lent did religion forbid drinking this drink. At the wedding, it was a tradition to give the newlyweds a tub of honey, which they had to drink during the first month of married life, perhaps this is where the term "honeymoon" comes from. In addition, honey had a ritual significance. It was shared with the gods and compared with the rivers of the afterlife, where honey and milk waters flow.

At first, it took years to prepare mead, because then honey was mixed with the juice of sour berries and left to ferment in tubs or vats. Then the liquid was poured and sealed in barrels underground for decades. This method was called put.

Later, hops were added to the honey—berry mixture before the fermentation process to speed up the process. This mead was stronger and could be drunk after two years.

Later, boiled honey appeared, when honey was first boiled with water (this decoction was called a sieve and was an independent non—alcoholic honey drink and an addition to many dishes).

In the 17th century, with the advent of wine and beer, mead lost its popularity. But in the twentieth century, the drink of mead became widespread, which continued the tradition. Then beekeeping became very common, a lot of so—called "immature honey" appeared, which could not be sold and they came up with a drink made by fermenting it with yeast.

How to cook?
Spotykach (type of infusion)

Spotykach is a sweet alcoholic tincture with spices, (30 degrees in strength). In Ukraine, this drink appeared in the XVIII century. The name obviously comes from the effect that the “spotykach” (meaning “stumbling”) had on consumers. There are also options for preparing the drink not on spices, but on berries or with the addition of fruit juices.

How to cook?
Horilka

Horilka (vodka) is an alcoholic beverage made from a solution of ethyl alcohol (usually 40%). The name (from Ukrainian “hority” - “to burn”) is explained by the fact that to check the alcohol content in the drink it was set on fire. If the amount was sufficient, the liquid burned with a green-blue flame.

The first analogue of horilka was made in the X century by a Persian doctor. In Ukraine it appeared in the XV - XVI centuries. during the Cossacks. Moreover, at first it was called "hot wine", "bread wine" because it was made from cereals. And the word "horilka" began to be used only in the XVIII century. By the way, Ukrainians made horilka from wheat, while Russians made vodka from rye or a mixture of oats, rye and barley. In the Zaporozhian Sich, the production and export of "Cherkasy wine" (as it was then called) to various countries, including Moscovia, was established.

The classic value of ethanol content in the drink was 38%, but later a standard of strength of 40% was set for convenience.

Today Ukraine is considered one of the countries of the so-called "vodka belt" and is known for its classic wheat horilka infused on pepper.

How to cook?
Nastoika

With the advent of horilka in Ukraine in the fifteenth century, soon began to appear also many nasktoikas and liqueurs prepared on its basis. They were made mainly on berries (plums and cherries) or on herbs and roots of plants using 20-degree vodka, left to ferment in a warm room. Compared to liqueurs, tinctures were stronger and were considered a privileged drink. It was drunk and made by well-off people.

How to cook?
Kalganivka (type of tincture)

Kalganivka is one of the most popular traditional Ukrainian nastoikas, which is a horilka infused with the root of galangal (a herbaceous plant that grows mainly in forests). The drink has a reddish-amber color, a pleasant floral scent and is quite easy to drink. Kalganivka was often used for medicinal purposes and as a simple drink for the table.

Kotlyarevsky even mentioned it in the Aeneid, which indicates that it really is a drink with a long history.

How to cook?
Uzvar

Uzvar (compote) or, as it was also called kisselitsa, var, zvar, still remains one of the most popular drinks of Ukrainians. It is made from dried berries: pears, apples, plums, cherries, blueberries, in the southern regions uzvar made of apricots is quite widespread. Ukrainians dried the fruits in the sun, in ordinary or special ovens - dryers or baths.

The uzvar was cooked mainly in the oven both on holidays and on weekdays. Compote was the second most important dish after Christmas. The liquid was poured into a beautiful jug and placed next to the corner. The thick of the berries was poured into a bowl and also served to the table.

How to cook?
Bublyky (bagels)

Bublyky (bagels) - a traditional dish of Ukrainian cuisine, which can be cooked from choux pastry or yeast dough. This product can be salty or sweet, lean or with poppy seeds, etc. 

Previously, the wealth of the family could be assessed by what kind of bublyky are present on the table. Poorer families could only afford lean bagels, while wealthier people served bublyky with poppy seeds and powdered sugar.

Bublyky were also used as decorations - they were hung along the oven. And this dish was an element of the wedding ceremony: the bride and groom wore a necklace of small bublyky around their necks. These decorations were to give wealth and prosperity to the new family.

How to cook?
Cheburek

Chebureki is a traditional dish of the Crimean Tatar cuisine. 

It is believed that its roots go back to the Mongol-Tatar nomadic tribes. That is why chebureki are eaten wherever nomads set foot in the ancient times. Even in the highlands of Tibet you can taste a similar dish! But the name itself is purely Crimean Tatar and means "meat pie". In Ukraine, chebureki are also common among the Greeks of Mariupol, but under a different name - "chir-chir".

How to cook?
Shovdar

Shovdar is a delicatessen meat product prepared in Transcarpathia. Like borscht, each household prepares its own, special shovdar. So there are many recipes.

Shovdar is an integral part of the Easter basket. This dish is quite difficult to prepare: you will need a lot of salt, a lot of time and your own smokehouse. Not surprisingly, it is prepared only for major holidays, such as Christmas. In Uzhhorod, even a monument in honor of this remarkable dish was erected.

How to cook?
Polyadvytsya

Polyadvytsya or polyadovytsya is a dish of Western cuisine, which is also common in Belarus and Poland.

Actually, the word "polyadvytsya" means a special part of the carcass of an animal. It is cut from the femur so as not to damage the ham muscles. Pork, beef and even horse meat can be used as the main raw materials. 

Traditionally, our ancestors cooked polyadvytsya for several months. The meat was prepared during the autumn slaughter, marinated in a special way and dried in boxes until spring. Modern housewives do not have so much time to cook, so the recipe has become much simpler and faster.

How to cook?
Salo

Salo is one of the main symbols of Ukrainian cuisine. It is consumed raw, salted or smoked. But the main thing is that with any method of cooking lard remains always delicious.

Archaeological research shows that Ukrainians have been consuming salo since ancient times. At that time, this dish had a symbolic meaning: the boar embodied strength, courage and bravery. Subsequently, lard was highly valued for its long shelf life and the ability to stock up on food for the future. And today, scientists insist on the unique beneficial properties of this product. Regular consumption of small amounts of salo is the prevention of serious diseases, including atherosclerosis.

How to cook?
Kholodets (Meat Jelly)

Kholodets is a cold meat dish common among the Slavic peoples of Eastern Europe.

It is believed that kholodets was cooked in the days of Kyivan Rus. This conclusion was prompted by historians to an interesting fact: in all East Slavic languages, this dish has the same name. This means that kholodets was invented at a time when there were no strong differences between languages.

Jelly, like most meat dishes, was prepared for major winter holidays, such as Christmas. The invention of gelatin contributed to the fact that kholodets began to be made less thick, and more refined ingredients - ham, mushrooms, various spices - began to be added instead of cartilage and bones. However, after the arrival of the Bolsheviks, all "bourgeois" recipes were taboo.

How to cook?
Friga

Friga is a dish that is common in the mountainous regions of Transcarpathia. It is also called "Hutsul fondue" because of the similarity of cooking with the famous Swiss dish.

The history of the friga is probably similar to the history of the fondue. The shepherds went to the mountains for a long time and took with them food that did not spoil for a long time. Including cheese. However, after a while the cheese dried up, so it was heated in a cauldron. And so the friga appeared.

The cooking method described above is called "poor frigo". If you add lard and sausages to the cheese, you will get a "rich fridge".

How to cook?
Gutsul Varya (Beetrut salad)

Hutsul Varya is a dish native to Bukovyna. Its main ingredient is boiled beets. This salad is usually prepared during Lent, because it does not contain meat and other animal products. At the same time the dish turns out very hearty and tasty.

How to cook?

Authentic Ukrainian Savors

One of the best ways to get to know a country is to taste it. The cultural code of the nation is encrypted in its food, the methods of its preparation and the dish ingredients. These aspects facilitate understanding of the cultural, mental, religious nature of people. After all, almost every dish on the table of a Ukrainian had a symbolic or ritual significance.

Although ethnographic studies of Ukrainian cuisine were first conducted only at the end of the XIX century, recipes of the main folk dishes have been preserved to this day: borsch with pampushkas, varenyky, crepes, buckwheat chicken patties, banosh, etc. Having tried them at least once, you will not be able to forget their taste!

Choose a region to travel across the unique tastes of Ukraine

Ukrainian cuisine is simultaneously coherent and variable. The main dishes of our cuisine are loved and regularly cooked by all Ukrainians. However, there is a certain variability determined by geographical factors. For example, in Zakarpattia and Bukovyna, sheep breeding has long been widespread, so there the diet of people included brynza and budza. They were added to a common dish, thus creating its local variation. But in Polissya there were plenty of potatoes, so this region is characterized by boiled potato cutlets, potato pancakes and potato varenyky.
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