Kazakh Lamb's Head

Kazakh Boiled Sheep’s Head

When I published my beshbarmak recipe, I promised that I would soon write another post about its indispensable complement on any successful Kazakh festive dinner table: a boiled sheep’s head, to be served to the most honored guest. Well, even after several attempts at perfecting the unlikely delicacy, I must say that I still find this to be a […]

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Pasta-Caviar Duo

Russian Pasta-Caviar Duo, Moscow-New York

It all begins about 20 years ago in Moscow. There aren’t that many noteworthy restaurants in the Russian capital yet. I don’t know if Pizzeria San Marco, on the Arbat, really counts as noteworthy (it just serves pizza and pasta), but hey, it’s near the small apartment where I’m staying, and in the middle of the economic […]

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Shubat, Fermented Camel's Milk

Shubat, Central Asian Fermented Camel’s Milk

If you read my recent post and were inspired to start making your own real kefir, don’t put your kefir grains in the freezer just yet—I’ve got another recipe for you! Well, don’t set your expectations too high, as there are only so many things you can do with those grains. In fact, there’s only one: […]

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Russian Food - Kefir

Kefir, the Probiotic Miracle from the Caucasus

Over the past decade or so, kefir, a kind of cultured milk sometimes described as a “tangy milk smoothie,” has gained popularity and conquered the shelves of American supermarkets. “Probiotic,” the labels proudly proclaim, as if that word — that word you’d never heard until that moment — should become your new mantra. After all, […]

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Kazakh Cuisine - Beshbarmak

Beshbarmak, Kazakhstan’s National Dish

Here’s a dish that fits with my current Central Asian travel story series and also helps me keep my New Year’s resolution: beshbarmak, Kazakhstan’s National Dish. Kazakh cuisine borrows heavily from its neighbors, and doesn’t count many dishes it can genuinely call its own. This isn’t much of a surprise when you consider that one […]

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Georgian Food - Gurian Khachapuri

Gurian Khachapuri, the Unsung Georgian Cheese Bread

When I blogged about the cheese debauchery that’s the Mingrelian khachapuri, some may have thought (hoped?) that I was finally putting the khachapuri topic to rest, having now covered the most popular variations at great length. Big mistake: the subject is far from being exhausted. So I hope you like cheese, because there are gonna be more […]

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Blueberry-Chocolate Roll, Apple Sorbet, and Buckwheat Crème Anglaise

Blueberry-Chocolate Roll, Apple Sorbet, and Buckwheat Crème Anglaise

It all started with Irina Chadeyeva’s Vypechka po GOSTu, a compilation of Soviet era baking hits, from the Kiev cake to the kartoshka (each of which I’ve encountered here and here, respectively). Chadeyeva’s recipes, often named after cities from the four corners of the Empire, for reasons unknown, are backed up with nostalgic pictures of the […]

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Albanian Cuisine - Tavë Kosi and Qofte

Tavë Kosi and Qofte Të Fërguara, Albania’s National Dishes

I’m finally starting to act upon my New Year’s resolution of blogging more national dish recipes! Earlier this month it was Liberland, now it’s Albania’s turn. And you even get two dishes for the price of one: tavë kosi and qofte të fërguara. Tavë kosi is a baked dish of lamb and rice covered with yogurt (in […]

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Cherry Varenyky and Goat Cheese Ice Cream

Cherry Varenyky and Goat Cheese Ice Cream

I thought I’d written everything one needs to know about varenyky. I’ve prepared the Ukrainian dumplings with potatoes, cabbage, butternut squash, and artichoke. I’ve eaten them at countless restaurants reviewed on these pages, I’ve even tried some at a dumpling festival. So what did I forget? I forgot to blog a dessert version! So here are my supercharged cherry varenyky. […]

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