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What Are the Different Types of Russian Desserts?

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  • Written By: Kali Cozyris
  • Edited By: Rachel Catherine Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 24 November 2016
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In Russian desserts, the key components are cheeses, fruits and pastries. Russia's most notable dessert is its pancake, or "blin," which is similar to the American pancake, only smaller and usually topped with sour cream. Several Russian desserts are considered staples in the Russian diet and enjoyed elsewhere around the globe. Some popular Russian desserts are ptichye moloko, a Russian crème torte, pashka, a soft cheese and dried fruit dish, vareniki, small sweet dumplings, and blin, the Russian pancake.

Ptichye moloko is one of the better-known Russian desserts. Translated, it means "bird's milk," and like many Russian desserts, it is indeed a rare indulgence as its unique name suggests. Sometimes this treat takes the form of a candy with a meringue base and hard chocolate topping, but most often, it is the cake form of ptichye moloko that graces the tables at parties and dinners. Sitting atop a thin biscuit base, a creamy eggwhite and agar-agar soufflé is topped with a chocolate glaze. This dessert has its roots in Russian folklore where a princess sends a suitor on a quest to bring her back a luxury she wants but that does not exist: bird's milk.

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Pashka is a Russian dessert that is traditionally enjoyed at Easter. It is a sweetened cheese mold that is similar to a cheesecake only it does not have a crust, and is usually topped with nuts and candied fruit. The foundation of the pashka is small curd, cream-style cottage cheese, eggs and whipping cream, with vanilla flavoring and sugar added for sweetness. The dessert is wrapped in cheesecloth and placed in the refrigerator to cool for 24 hours before being served.

Vareniki are little dumplings that can are filled with sweet or savory ingredients. As a dessert dish, they are typically stuffed with a semi-soft cheese called tvorog, and preserved fruit, with sour cherries being one of the more popular options in Slavic cuisine. The dough of vareniki is composed of flour, eggs and salt. Nuts and spices are added to give variation to these tasty nuggets.

The dessert version of the Russian pancake, blin — or blini if plural — is smaller and thinner than an American pancake and uses yeast to make it rise. Although usually served with sour cream, these delicious buckwheat pancakes can be filled with fruits, puddings and chocolates. One popular version of this dessert is to stack layers of the blinis on top of each other, slather each layer with jam, cut the stacks into pieces and serve like cake.

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fify
Post 3

@fBoyle-- There are many great Russian desserts. But if I had to pick one, it would be the pavlova. It's a very light cake with an outer shell made of sugar and egg and cream filling. It is then topped with things like jam or fresh fruits. There are many varieties out there but this is the classic version as far as I know.

If this doesn't interest you, you can also make Napoleon cake which is another classic Russian dessert. There are other similar cakes as well. The unique part about Russian cakes is that they tend to have many, many layers. So a slice just looks beautiful.

fBoyle
Post 2

What is the most common or most popular Russian dessert?

I'm attending a baking class. We're supposed to select desserts from different countries and try them. Everyone picked a country and I was left with Russia. I'm not too familiar with Russian desserts though. Which would be the best to make? Which is the quintessential Russian dessert?

ysmina
Post 1

I think the only Russian dessert I've had is Russian tea cakes. I get these from a local bakery. I actually did not know that they were a Russian recipe when I first tried them. They looked good, so I ordered some. They were so good that I made it a tradition to get some every Saturday. The girl who works there told me that these are classic Russian tea cakes. They're called tea cakes, but they're really cookies. Possibly the best cookies I've ever had or will ever have.

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