Over 25 years ago, when I was a teenager, I lived and studied in the US, and would come home to Russia for summer vacation.
During those summers, I spent countless hours in the kitchen, watching my mother cook. The strange thing is that I was never watching her to learn something. It was just a way to pass the time, to catch up on all the hours together we missed during the school year, to talk about everything we needed to talk about.
So, when I moved back to Russia and started my adult life in Moscow, and slowly began to learn how to cook and feed myself, I almost never reached for my mother’s recipes. This is partly because most of the stuff she cooked and baked was done instinctively, with no definite recipe. But mostly, I think, it was because I felt that I could never reach the heights of her perfection when it came to things like borsch, stewed cabbage, pilaf, and what not. There were some recipes that I appropriated for baking – but never her “signature” ones.
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Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.
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