Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe that’s often overlooked, but it’s one of the most vibrant and culturally diverse countries on the continent. It’s also known for its stunning architecture and pristine beaches, as well as its food!
Ukrainian cuisine is rooted in the country’s history, and its culinary traditions have changed little since its independence in 1991. Unlike many other countries in Europe, Ukraine has been able to maintain its independence without becoming part of Russia or the EU.
Borscht, or borschtshchyna, is the classic Ukrainian soup. It’s a hearty, red-colored dish that’s made with cabbage, carrots, potatoes, onions, and sometimes beets. It’s a staple in almost every Ukrainian household and is usually served with sour cream on top.
Holodetsi, or ‘horilka,’ is the most common form of horilka in Ukraine. They are small, round pieces of pork or beef with retained bones that are cooked in meat broth until they form a thick and gelatinous mass. The horilka is then refrigerated to set the gelatin. It’s a hearty dish that is commonly served at a party and is incredibly filling.
Potato pancakes are another popular food in Ukraine and can be found in most restaurants in the country. They’re similar to Polish latkes, but with a Ukrainian twist. They’re made with grated or ground potatoes, matzo meal, and a binding ingredient like eggs or applesauce. They’re often seasoned with dill and served with sour cream.
Pampushki, or bublik, are the Ukrainian version of a bagel and are topped with poppy seeds. They’re a quick and easy breakfast that’s perfect for a lazy weekend morning with coffee or tea!
Walnut Stuffed Prunes
This is probably the most simple and easiest dish in Ukraine – just soak some prunes in water for a couple of hours and then stuff them with walnuts. They’re delicious and the best way to start your day.
Kyiv Cake (aka Kiev)
If you’re looking for a sweet treat to serve your guests, try making this classic Ukrainian cake. It’s light and airy in the center, with a soft sponge layer that’s sandwiched by crunchy layers of nuts.
After a long night of drinking and partying, nothing will help you feel better than a bowl of solyanka. This Russian-style meat soup is typically served with boiled potatoes and hard-boiled eggs, which help to ease the pain of a hangover.
Solyanka is a great hangover cure and is eaten around the world by Ukrainians, Germans, and former Soviets. It’s a delicious and healthy hangover remedy that can be enjoyed on its own or paired with other dishes.
Korovai, or wedding bread, is a traditional treat for Ukrainian brides and grooms. They are decorated with a variety of dough decorations including suns, moons, flowers, plants, birds, animals or other designs that make them look like a wedding cake.
The korovai are traditionally given to the bride and her bridal party before their wedding, and then shared with the rest of the group afterward. This is a fun and beautiful tradition to be a part of for the big day!