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The Taste of St. Petersburg: Top 5 Dishes to Try in the Northern Capital City of Russia
September 12, 2018 16:53


Tasteful impressions are some of the best souvenirs that you can bring home from your trips. The most delicious travels naturally come with gourmet tours. Until you try the traditional Russian cuisine, you will not be able to fully understand the culture of this country. Sure, in Saint Petersburg you can find food from almost any cuisine of the world, but there are special dishes that have the character and taste of this magnificent city.
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When walking along the Nevsky Prospect on a cool rainy day, it feels so nice to step into a cafe and get warm with hot and savoury St. Petersburg Rassolnik (pickle soup) or the famous Beef Stroganoff. If your way lies through the Great Stable Street, then the smell of hot doughnuts from the cafe near the grand DLT Emporium just will not let you pass by.
St. Petersburg Rassolnik (Pickle Soup)

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Perhaps due to Petersburg weather, which is rarely sunny and more often rainy and windy, the hearty and hot rassolnik with its rich taste is very popular here. Rassolnik, i.e. traditional Russian soup based on cucumber pickles, could be found the menu of any Russian tavern of the XIX century. It still keeps a place of honor in the list of first courses of Russian cuisine. If Moscow rassolnik is special for beef kidneys as its part and parcel, St. Petersburg version must have pearl barley as its important ingredient.
Ingredients: meat broth, potatoes, carrots, cucumber pickles, pearl barley, onion, leek, greens, tomato paste and sour cream.
Beef Stroganoff

This is one of the most popular dishes of Russian cuisine. Its invention is attributed to Count Alexander Stroganov, who was the military governor of St. Petersburg in 1854 and the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. As assumed, in the old age he had problems with his teeth, and so his cook thinly sliced ​​meat and fried it in sour cream sauce so that it were softer and more chewable.
Ingredients: beef, sour cream, tomato paste, wheat flour, onion, salt, pepper, and greens.

Fried Smelt

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Without exaggeration, fried smelt can be called a real culinary symbol of St. Petersburg. This small, but very tasty fish lives in local waters, so it has always been used for food by the townspeople. Spring is considered to be the high season of smelt. At this time of the year nearly every restaurant and house smells of fried fish. The love of St. Petersburg dwellers for this dish is confirmed by the fact that on one of the May Holidays the city celebrates the annual Smelt Festival.
Ingredients of fried smelt: smelt, onion, wheat flour, salt, and sunflower oil.

Doughnuts

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Doughnuts (named “pyshki” in Russian by locals) make a traditional dessert in St. Petersburg. If you have visited Saint Petersburg but have never eaten local pyshki there it means you do not know what this city really tastes like. Traditional Petersburg hot doughnuts taken with hot coffee is a popular ritual among Petersburg dwellers. Thus you can find pyshki cafes in many places there.

Ingredients: wheat flour, yeast, margarine, eggs, sugar, salt, water, and sugar powder.
Arina Rodionovna’s Pancakes with Beet Juice

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Famous Russian poet Alexander Pushkin, when a little kid, was treated with these unusual pinkish pancakes by his dear nanny Arina Rodionovna and liked them as much as her, probably. They had that special pinkish color due to beetroot juice as an ingredient and were more than delicious with gooseberry jam, which emphasized their taste. 
Ingredients: wheat flour, eggs, butter, beet juice, and sour milk.
This dish has been included in the government project "Petersburg cuisine" that aims at creating the culinary brand of the Northern capital city of Russia.
Read about Other Regional Cuisines of Russiaand Traditional Russian Dishes You Should Try

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Author: Vera Ivanova

Tags: Saint Petersburg Russian Cuisine Regional Cuisines Gourmet Tours  

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