Friday, February 10, 2012

Belarus: Cooking Around the World with Camilla (CATWWC)

We are continuing with the 'B's in our cooking around the world adventure, venturing to Belarus for dinner tonight.

Dylan was very excited when he located Belarus in the atlas tonight because it's next door to the Ukraine and not too far from Kiev where one of his best friends from school was born.

And I was excited because this meal presented me with things I had never considered, for instance putting oatmeal in a savory soup. I put rice and barley in soups. Why not oatmeal, right? I just always think of my oatmeal as a breakfast food...with lots of fruit. So putting it in a soup with onions and mushrooms was a novel idea.

Belarusian Oatmeal Soup with Mushrooms

The original recipe calls for dried mushrooms. I opted for fresh mushrooms, added shallots, and skipped the sour cream.

3 potatoes, diced
2 C rough cut oats
1 lb stuffing portabella mushrooms, washed, dried, and sliced
2 carrots, sliced
1 onion, diced
3 shallots, diced
chicken broth3 bay leaves
pink Himalaya salt

In a soup pot, soften the onions and shallots with a pat of butter. Add the carrots and mushrooms and cook till the carrots are fork-tender. Pour in the chicken broth. Stir in the oatmeal and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Season with salt. Serve hot.

For dessert I found a recipe for a Belarusian Sweet Apple Pie with Sour Apples. The instructions from says to use apples of "antonovka" variety which are ubiquitous in Belarus. However they are impossible to find outside the former Soviet Union, so we used Granny Smiths instead.

5 apples - peeled, cored, and sliced
3 eggs
1 C white whole wheat flour
3/4 C organic raw turbinado sugar

Place the sliced apples in a buttered baking dish. Create a batter with the remaining ingredients. Pour the batter over the apples, ensuring that the batter flows all the way to the bottom. Cover with foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 50 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Serve hot with a dusting of powdered sugar.

Enjoy my tabletop travels. Join me in whipping up a dish or two. If you do cook something from one of these countries, I'd love to hear about it. Feel free to comment on the posts themselves or email me at constantmotioncamilla at gmail dot com.

This Knight of the Global Table Adventure is signing off for now. Belgium is up next.

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