St. Valentine’s Day
If you are in love, I wish you to spend this wonderful day with your loved one. If you are stuck in a hopeless relationship, get yourself out of it immediately – everyone deserves real love and there is the right person for you out there. If you are not in love yet, I am sure you will find your Mr./Ms. Right very soon. All you need to do is to believe in it. Happy St. Valentine’s Day!
For those who are desperate to find their love today: shut your eyes and walk out the door. The first person you bump into will be your love. For the best result it is strongly recommended to peep whilst walking. Good luck!
As I predicted, I have received from Alex a really nice valentine with a poem written entirely by him! Even though he says this poem is rubbish, I think it is the best poem ever written because it is about us and because he wrote it for me :) And guess what else? The most beautiful flowers have just been delivered to my front door (see the photo). There is a note with no signature in the bouquet, but I think, no, I am sure, I know, it is from him! Thank you honey, I … you too. A million times so… xxxxxxxxx
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I have separated the love part of the blog from the rest of the blog with asterisks so that the more trivial subject of food will not mix with it.
Ssso. F-O-O-D. Do you live to eat or do you eat to live? You might leave this rhetorical question without an answer as I know that most of us eat to live, not vice versa. You must know that traditional Russian cuisine is far from being exotic; it can be explained by the fact that the major part of Russia is situated above the subtropical zone. Traditional Russian cuisine is very different from that in the south of Russia as that region is densely inhabited by the peoples of the Caucasus (Armenian, Georgian, and Azerbaijani) who brought with themselves culinary traditions typical of their national cuisine.
No Russian table can do without soups. Russian soups are not pureed so basically they are water with meat and vegetables in it. There are a few types of soup of which I will name the ones with the most character in them: borsch (red beet soup), solyanka (saulty soup), harcho (smoky-flavoured Armenian soup) and rassolnik (pickled cucumbers soup). There is another type of soup which is normally eaten in summer. The main ingredient in it is kvas. Kvas is a beverage made from barley, brown bread and sometimes honey. The taste of it could be compared to the taste of beer but it is a bit sweeter and is considered non-alcoholic (but it might contain a very small percentage of alcohol sometimes). This soup is called okroshka and it is eaten cold, you don’t even need to boil it or cook the other ingredients. As I like okroshka very much I will tell you more about it. You just need to chop cucumbers, spring onions, dill, parsley, boiled eggs and sausages; then you add kvas. Your okroshka is ready to be eaten; but remember to put some grated horseradish and sour cream into your helping of okroshka. Okroshka has a rather strong taste (it also depends on how much horseradish you put into it) and you might not love it straightaway.
If you are on a diet, porridge will be your watchword. Porridge is made by boiling meal (oatmeal, buckwheat, rice, millet etc) in milk or water until thick. It is served with butter.
Another dish you might have heard of is pelmeni. You will find them on everyone’s New Year table. Pelmeni are similar to ravioli with the difference that they are shaped differently (they resemble ears, if you ask me). The filling can be minced meat, minced cabbage or mashed potato. Pelmeni with minced cabbage or minced potato are called vareniki and are shaped a bit differently. Pelmeni are served with sour cream or khrenovaya (sauce made from tomatoes, horseradish and garlic). You can also flavour them with some black pepper or weak vinegar.
Dairy products are very popular in our country. They are baked milk, kefir (basically it is soured milk), cottage cheese, sour cream (it is added to practically every type of food), ryazhenka and others.
Let me finish with the least healthy but the most delicious pirogi. Pirogi can be big (the size of your baking tray) or small (the size of half of your palm), open (i.e. without the upper lay of dough) or normal. Pirogi can be filled with absolutely anything: thick jam, fruit, berries, mushrooms, cottage cheese, potato, meat, chopped boiled eggs with spring onion, grated carrots, minced cabbage, fish etc.
Hope this gives you an idea of traditional Russian cuisine. I haven’t mentioned blini and red (or black) caviar yet. (Was it Anita who said that she didn’t like caviar?) Well, any type of caviar is not a common sight on one’s dinner table as it is rather expensive and is considered a delicacy. It is eaten with bread and butter; however you need to remember that too much caviar will ruin your sandwich.
Trudi, what’s wrong with me?! Why am I making such silly mistakes all the time? Hares-hairs, are-our, flaw-flow etc. lol Maybe one day I will find my “hairs” in a book of funny mistakes made by learners of English. Have you started to keep a record of amusing errors your students make yet? Anyway, here are the sentences you picked from my last two blogs I have tried to improve:
1) We do have theatres and ballets, it’s a fact.
2) Not to the extent at which you know all the impostant names. Here you go. I have confessed.
3) We are all having our nerves on edge at the moment.
4) My friends and I went skating today in the afternoon.
5) Then brooks and puddles appear everywhere.
6) I didn’t risk biking in Egland as I am a bit scared of riding a bike along a road with the flow of vehicles.
7) So probably my decision was the only right one.
With best wishes on St. Valentine’s Day,
Anastasia (aka Yoda)
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