05 June 2010

Where to find some familiar recipes

My Easter table with untraditional asparagus
The Internet offers a lot of options for home cooks who don't have mama or baba around to make familiar dishes. With a little searching around, you can find recipes similar to those we grew up with in Rusyn-American homes, both holiday dishes like my Easter table at right, or everyday dishes.

There was one fledgling attempt to start a Rusyn food blog, In the Rusyn Kitchen. Sadly, the author hasn't kept up with the effort.

But there are a number of sites that try to catalog various kinds of Eastern and Central European recipes that are close to our own favorites. The broadest is Barbara's Eastern European Food Blog. It has a strongly  Polish flavor, reflecting the heritage of its Chicago-based author, Barbara Rolek. But she offers a wide variety of tempting recipes and food tips and interesting articles.

Last Christmas' nut roll
A search of Barbara's site yields Christmas Eve recipes from our very own Charlotte Conjelko, the secretary of the Lake Michigan Chapter of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society. The article calls the recipes "Slovak," but we know they're really Rusyn specialties.

I've exchanged e-mails with Lubos, the guy behind the ambitious Slovak Cooking site. He offers step-by-step recipes for very Slovak dishes (he knows they're not Rusyn, or even East Slovak cooking). Many of the dishes he makes are now standard in Rusyn homes in Slovakia, so if you've tasted something at a relative's home in the family village, you may find the recipe at Lubos' site.

Several other sites I like:
  • Russian Season, with entries from two Russian women who live in Latvia, and Stano, a Slovak food blogger.
  • Yulinka Cooks is written by a woman in Milwaukee who shares some of her family food memories from the old Soviet Union.
  • Food and Beverages in Hungary offer a Magyar take on some foods that may be familiar.
Do you know of any more tasty sites? Don't forget to post the URLs with your comments.

I've included a link to one of the rare published Rusyn cookbooks out there, C-RS member Lisa Alzo's "Baba's Kitchen" if you're looking for something to put on that kitchen cookbook shelf.

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