Ukraine food is closely linked to the customs, culture and way of life of people in the Ukraine. Ukraine food is famous for its diversity and quality of flavor.
The most popular Ukrainian meal is "borshch". This thick, hearty and delicious soup is prepared with a variety of ingredients including meat, mushrooms, beans, and even prunes. Different regions of Ukraine have different recipes for this soup. Sauerkraut and cabbage soups are also Ukrainian favourites. Ukrainians often spread salo (pork lard) on their bread instead of butter. Sometimes salo is flavoured with garlic or mixed with bits of bacon.
"Holubtsi", or stuffed cabbage, is another favorite meal in the Ukraine, as are "varenyky" (pierogis) filled with potatoes, meat, cheese, sauerkraut, or fruit such as blueberries or cherries. Varenyky are often mentioned in Ukrainian folk songs.
People in the Ukraine like dairy products. Some samples: cottage cheese pancakes, "riazhanka" (fermented baked milk) and "nalysnyky" (usually cheese-filled crepes). Traditionally, Ukrainian Christians did not eat meat or dairy products during Lent, the forty days before Easter. As a result, they developed many vegetarian dishes.
There are no Ukraine holidays without pies, "pampushky" (type of fritter), "baba" (a tall, cylindrical cake), honey cakes. Ukrainian sausage is very tasty. It is preserved in a special way - in porcelain vessels smothered in melted fat.
Ukraine food is famous for its breads and pastries. At Ukrainian weddings, it is traditional to offer korovai, special bread built up to form a tall cylinder. Kolach, Christmas bread made with sour cream and honey, is dipped in salt and honey and given to each member of the household during the traditional Christmas meal. At Easter, special egg bread called paska, which is often shaped into a cross, is served.
Ukrainians are famous for another Easter tradition: decorated eggs called pysanky. They prepare the eggs by painting a design on them using wax and dipping them in dye. The dyes can be made from natural ingredients: red cabbage leaves for blue, onion skins for yellow or orange, herbs for green, beets or raspberries for red. The designs use traditional patterns and symbols, some of which are much older than Christian traditions.
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