Sunday, April 12, 2015

Unit 9 - Kholodets

I asked my brother’s fencing coach who is Russian but spent her childhood in Ukraine what her favorite regional dish was and I decided to make it. The dish she recommended was kholodets, which is basically soup in jello form. The word kholodets comes from the Russian word for cold, as the dish is chilled in order for it to set. People in Russia usually make it as a festive dish for Christmas. It’s made by boiling meat and bones (pigs’ feet, chicken, and beef bones for the normal variety or just beef bones and chicken for the kosher variety) and then adding spices. Carrots, parsnips, and boiled eggs are usually added as decorations. It has to be put in a mold, much like jello, and chilled overnight either in a refrigerator or if you’re in Russia during the winter, outside. It was really weird for me to imagine a savory gelatin dish, but I tried it and it wasn’t that bad. I made the Kosher variety because I couldn’t find pigs feet, but I’m curious what the normal variety with pigs feet is like.

                                           Beef bones, chicken legs, and special kholodets spice

                                                  One of the batches of kholodets in the pan

                                                    One of the finished batches of kholodets

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