On March 20th (2019) many
people congratulated each other with beginning of Spring. Also, we can call it
Astronomical spring or vernal equinox.
spring and autumn equinoxes are considered to be the astronomical beginning of
the seasons of the same name.
The spring equinox is an astronomical
phenomenon in which the center of the Sun, in its visible motion along the
Ecliptic, crosses the celestial equator. The vernal equinox begins between
March 19 and 21, at different points of the planet at different times. The time
of the equinox is related both to the geographical location of the countries
and to the duration of calendar years.
Why is Spring associated with blini (Russian-style pancakes) for Russians?
Just because in Spring they eat a lot of blini.
Russian pancakes, also known as blini or blinchiki, are really special
for people raised in Russia. Blini are a really important part of Russian
culture as they are a pearl of Russian cuisine.
Blini are much wider
and thinner than American-style pancakes, but not as thin and wide
as crepes. It allows you to stuff them with everything you like; such as
ground-beef, ham, cheese, and salmon. You also can eat them with caviar, sour
cream, jam, chocolate cream, honey, condense milk, berries, or other sweets.
Every year on March 8 Russians celebrate International
Women’s day. On this day, men try to pay attention to every important woman in
his life: mother, sister, grandmother, beloved ones, as well as female
colleagues. They give gifts, mostly flowers, and say compliments.
Since after the October revolution of 1917,
this holiday has been celebrated mainly in socialist countries. The Chinese
Communists celebrated it since 1922, and by Spanish Communists from 1936. Republic
of China (founded on October 1, 1949) proclaimed that Chinese women work a half
of a day on March 8th.
On February 23 Russia celebrates
the Day of military glory of Russia — Day of the Defender of Fatherland.
By tradition, this day congratulate not only the current defenders of the
Fatherland, but also the defenders of potential – in other words, all men from
small to large. It is becoming more common for
women who serve in the military to be honored on this day, and this challenges
the traditionally masculine aspect of the holiday.
Tatiana Day is a Russian religious holiday observed on
25 January according to the Gregorian calendar ( January 12
according to the Julian). It is named after Saint
Tatiana. The Martyress
Tatiana lived in Rome at the turn of the II-III centuries, during the reign of
Emperor Alexander the Severus. According to legend, for refusing to sacrifice
to Apollo, Tatiana was tortured. But the next day her wounds always healed, and
statues of pagan gods were destroyed three times through her prayer. Tatiana
and her father were executed on 12 January 226. Later, Tatiana of Rome was
proclaimed a Saint, and the day of her death became Tatiana’s day.
I think that in every country and every family
there is a traditional New Year’s menu.
In Russia, Olivier salad is not losing its leading
position. People even formed an association: if Olivier is on the table, then
we celebrate the New Year. There are many recipes for this salad. In every
family it is delicious and unique.
The original version of the salad was invented in the 1860s by French cook Lucien Olivier, the chef of the Hermitage, one of Moscow’s restaurants. Olivier’s salad quickly became popular with Hermitage regulars, and became the restaurant’s signature dish. It is known that the salad contained grouse, veal tongue, caviar, lettuce, crayfish tails, capers, and smoked duck, although it is possible that the recipe was varied seasonally. The original Olivier dressing was a type of mayonnaise, made with French wine vinegar, mustard, and Provençal olive oil; its exact recipe, however, remains unknown.
All people spend New Year’s Eve in different ways. Someone with friends goes to the sauna, someone makes salads. But my husband and I cleaned the chimney.
In fact, we try to do everything in advance. Therefore, chimney sweeps came to us in the summer. Apparently, they didn’t do their job very well. In autumn my husband and I noticed the frequent smell of smoke while using the fireplace. Then it became worse. Smoke detector began to turn on regularly and loudly. Imagine the situation: my husband drowns the fireplace, and suddenly-a loud smoke detector signal, the dog howls (he does not like sharp sounds), I wave the towel, trying to ward off the smoke from the sensor….really a madhouse. A couple of times, we even opened the window.
“Herring under a fur coat” is a popular Russian salad of salted herring and vegetables. About the mid 70-es of the last century the salad became a traditional dish for the New Year and holiday tables.
Salads with ingredients typical of “Herring under a fur Coat”, were distributed in the first half of the 19th century in Scandinavian and German kitchens, and were called “herring salad”. The author of Russian variant of the salad is a merchant Anastas Bogomilov, who owned several pubs in Moscow. Drunken fights happened very often at those pubs. Then he decided to come up with a dish, that would be nourishing and unite different segments of the population. His chef, Aristarkh Prokoptsev, put together salted herring, which symbolized the proletariat, potatoes which symbolized the peasantry, beets symbolized red color of the Bolshevik flag. The name of a new salad was “Shuba”, an acronym for “Shovinismu I Upadku – Boikot I Anafema”, what means “Death and Damnation to Shavinism and Degradation. “Shuba” was served for the first time on the Eve of 1919 New Year. Continue reading ““Herring under a fur coat””
Very often I am asked the question: “Do you find that life in the US is very different from life in Russia? And what is so different between these lives? I would say “Everything”.
There are some of them.
I would start with customer service. The journey from Tomsk, Russia to Boston, USA is very long, that is why decent service is very important. There are so many people at the airports who try to help you, answer your questions no matter on your accent. In Russia you hardly will able to find someone to ask the question.