Tag Archives: starter

Herring under a fur coat or Russian Shuba Salad

¬†It sounds funny and may be a little weird, but that’s how we called a very popular salad in Russia. Exactly under a fur coat, not in. ūüôā I can’t imagine Russian New Year celebration without this salad.¬†Another nickname or short name of the salad is ‘shuba’, that means fur coat in Russian.
The main¬†ingredients¬†are beets, potatoes and lightly salted herring; the salad is composed of vegetable¬†layers¬†coated with mayonnaise. Nowadays, ‘shuba’ has undergone a number of changes, one add hard-boiled¬†eggs, another omit onions or add ¬†an apple. But the one thing is still constant – the salad is incredibly favoured and beloved by many Russians!
Shuba Salad
¬†A legend says that such salad was created by¬†a merchant Anastas Bogomilov, who was an owner of the popular tavern and¬†restaurant¬†chain in Moscow at the¬†beginning¬†of the 20th¬†century. It was a time of The Civil War and Revolution in Russia, and taverns’ visitors discussed the¬†Russian future with patriotic fervour, so they became¬†furious and began to fight. And of course, they broke some¬†furniture¬†and smashed plates during their drunken brawls. To avoid it, a merchant devised a stratagem – to make a well-nourishing zakuska (a starter) and a symbol of the public union in one dish. Thus, one of his cooks –¬†Aristarkh Prokopcev prepared and served¬†a new salad ‘shuba’ at the New 1918 Year eve, where red color of beetroots symbolized the red flag, and potatoes were the food of workers and peasants. Shuba¬†was an abbreviation, first letters of a slogan; Sh for¬†Chauvinism, U for¬†Decay, B for¬†Boycott, A for¬†Anathema.¬†Visitors and guests liked this salad and began to order it often. As the salad were fatty, guests¬†couldn’t¬†got drunk very fast, thus scuffles happened rarely and¬†furniture¬†was left untouched.
 Long after, people forgot the origins of the salad, but it became an integral part of the festive new year table.
Russian layered salad - Shuba
Here is my version of the ‘herring under a fur coat’. For the dressing, I usually use only sour cream (it’s healthier), but you can substitute it with¬†mayonnaise, or make it 50/50. Also I add an grated apple – the salad gets freshness, but for someone an apple is unnecessary here. The choice is up to you.

Herring under a fur coat or Russian Shuba Salad

  • Servings: 5-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
200-300g herring fillet, lightly salted
1 brown onion, finely chopped
2 large potatoes, skin on and boiled
2 large beetroot, skin on, boiled or roasted
1 medium carrot, skin on and boiled
1-2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped or grated, optional
1 juicy and sour apple (granny smith is great), coarsely grated, optional
Dressing
100-150ml (15-20% fat) sour cream, or as much as you like
2-3 Tbsp mayonnaise, optional
1 tsp dijon mustard, optional
salt, pepper to taste
Garnish
dill, parsley or chives, optional
Preparation method
  1. For the dressing, mix all ingredients and season to taste, or use only sour cream. You can spread the dressing with a tablespoon, or use a piping bag.
  2. Cover chopped onion with hot water and soak for 5-10 minutes, it helps to remove the bitterness. Then drain water.
  3. Drain any liquid from herring. Cut herring fillet into small cubes. Make the first layer – arrange herring on a serving plate. Spread onion on herring.
  4. Peel vegetables and coarsely grate or finely chop.
  5. Arrange a layer of potatoes. Cover with dressing. Also you can make potatoes the very first layer, if desired.
  6. Spread eggs, if using, and lightly cover with dressing. Also you can top finished salad with eggs.
  7. Arrange a layer of carrot. Cover with dressing.
  8. Arrange a layer of apple. Lightly cover with dressing.
  9. Finish with a layer of beet. You can only top with grated beetroot, or complitely cover the salad. Spread evenly some dressing.
  10. Garnish with chopped dill or chives, if desired.

The salad becomes much better if you refrigerate it overnight (cover the salad with a foil) or for a few hours.

Enjoy!
Herring under a fur coat
I’m linking this wonderful, tasty and festive salad to Fiesta Friday.

Trout fritters with green peas

¬†Last weekend I bought a beautiful rainbow trout. It’s a very¬†delicious¬†fish, that rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and its’ also an¬†excellent¬†source of vitamins and protein. One its part gone to be cured (you may find the recipe here), another was roasted and I still had some more. I decided to make a pie from the book “pies and tarts” by S.Reaynaud. The recipe is very simple, it’s called for the trout, puff pastry, peas and horseradish, I’d had all that stuff. I’d made the filling and was¬†disappointed because¬†its¬†quantity¬†was more then enough, despite that I used more puff pastry then was needed. Fortunately, the overall result was fine, and the pie tasted pretty good. Have you tried to cook any pies from that book?

Thus I had to fix the remaining trout.. And here is the easiest and quickest recipe of delicious fritters. I used fresh trout, but you can substitute it with salmon, fresh or canned. I ate these little fritters for breakfast, they were good and satisfying!

Trout fritters
After plating I topped it with with sour cream and some horseradish sauce, also I recommend finishing it with a slice of cured trout or salmon. It was truly divine!Trout tritters with green peas and horseradish

Trout fritters with green peas

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
100-150g fresh trout, chopped
2 large potatoes, peeled and grated
50-60g green peas, fresh or frozen
1 Tbsp finely chopped onion, optional
1 egg white (or whole egg)
1-2 tsp horseradish sauce
3-4 Tbsp thin cream
4 Tbsp or more plain flour

sea salt, white pepper, to taste

Garnish: sour cream, horseradish sauce, lemon wedges, cured trout/salmon slices
Method
  • Preheat oven to 200C. Line the baking tray with parchment.
  • Squeeze out the liquid from potatoes. Add it to a mixing bowl along with trout, peas and onion. Add horseradish, egg white, cream and combine.
  • Add flour, salt and pepper, and mix well.
  • Scoop out the dough to make 10-12 fritters. Gently press them down with hand.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden-brown.
  • Serve with sauce you like and cured trout slices.
Enjoy the meal!
 Trout fritters with peas and horseradish

Scallops. Impress your guests!

Hey guys! Excluding this¬†awesome, simple and yet¬†satisfying¬†recipe, I have a question for you. Have you ever gone out from your comfort zone? Are you doing anything unusual or off-limits during the week or month, that¬†people¬†usually¬†don’t¬†expect from you?
Can you take a¬†bicycle¬†instead of car and go to work? Or can you stop eating desserts just for a week? Or may be say ‘yes’ to green tea, even if you never drink it, instead of your fav coffee? Can you stop drinking cola (I hope you don’t drink it at all)?
¬†Or may be to call a person, who is really dear to you, and you’ve been shy to speak to, and invite him/her for a dinner? ūüėČ
Start from simple things, try out new recipe! Prepare this amazing and¬†delicious¬†appetizer! Impress yourself and only then others! ūüôā
Scallops

Scallops with avocado puree and strawberries

You can serve tender scallops with strawberries or just with sauce. A glass of bubbly or chilled white wine would be perfect here! 
Ingredients
6 scallops
1 avocado
60-80g cream cheese
2 tsp lemon juice
8 strawberries
2 Tbsp finely chopped coriander
1-2 Tbsp olive oil, for frying
sea salt, white pepper
Sauce:
60-80ml dry white wine
1 tsp garlic puree (roasted garlic is great here)
1 tsp finely chopped coriander
1 Tbsp butter
Chop and blend avocado, add cream cheese, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.
Cut strawberries into small cubes, mix with fresh coriander.
Season scallops with salt and pepper, fry in the piping hot pan 2 minutes on each side.
In the middle of serving plate, arrange avocado puree, top with strawberries; then arrange scallops.
If you don’t like avocado, you can serve scallops simple as is with a sauce. In the same pan, where you fried scallops, add wine and deglaze the pan’s bottom. Add garlic, coriander, season to taste and bring to boil. Add butter, mix well and cook for few minutes more. Pour the sauce over the scallops.
Enjoy!

Grilled Tiger Prawns

¬†Summer is a lovely time to spend outdoors, having a barbecue, grill meat and veggies, enjoying weather..with some exception for Dubai, it’s terribly hot; the barbecue standing lonely, and waiting for the chilly days to be dust off.. If you are lucky and enjoying weather, I recommend to try this one of the most flavorful grilled prawns recipe I have tried (or grill it in the oven). The recipe is on my list of easy and impressive dishes!Grilled tiger prawns

I’d like to invite all bloggers who’s parting @FF to try these scrumptious prawns! I’ve got a couple of bottles of white wine.. ūüėČ I’m sure today evening will be a hit!

Grilled Tiger Prawns

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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2-3 prawns per person are enough for an appetizer, but for the main course increase the quantity as many as desired.

Can be served with a glass of good wine and pineapple salsa.

Ingredients

12 tiger prawns

1 shallot or small red onion

3 garlic gloves

1 small red chilli, optional

1 Tbsp fresh coriander, finely chopped

¬Ĺ lemon, juice

sea salt, black pepper to taste

Butter Sauce

60g butter

2 Tbsp coriander, finely chopped

2 Tbsp lemon juice

  • Cut prawns in the middle and clean. You can cut off heads or leave it. Arrange them in a big shallow dish.
  • Finely chop shallot, garlic and chilli. Sprinkle it over prawns along with coriander, add salt and pepper to taste. Cover the dish and let it marinate in the fridge for 1-3 hours or overnight.
  • Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before grilling. Grill for 5-7 minutes.
  • Make the sauce. Heat the butter in a small pan, add remaining coriander and lemon juice; adjust seasoning.
  • Serve hot! Enjoy!

Grilled tiger prawns by milkandbun