Sunday, June 17, 2018

World Cup 2018 - Russia

I will be cooking my way through the 2018 Football World Cup as usual, and for this tournament I am going to be exploring the cuisine of the host nation Russia and its neighbours. Many of the cookbooks that I own on the cuisine of Russia also include many of the neighbouring regions such as the Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Estonia and other near neeighbours where there are common food cultures.

So for each game I am going to try and prepare a dish from either Russia or a near by country, and I will also be making a cocktail that will have a link to one of the teams playing. In many cases my cocktails will have very tenuous links but I have recently bought a huge book on cocktails written by Simon Difford and I want to try out as many as I can while I have the excuse, and there are 3,000 in there to have a go at.

So for the opening game of Russian vs Saudi Arabia we had a smoked trout open sandwich on black bread with egg, dill and horseradish cream and a Sputnik #2 cocktail.

The hot smoked trout is from a Blakewells a local trout farm that also has a nice cafe.We often stop off to buy some of their smoked  trout when we are visiting the near by Broomhill sculpture gardens which are just outside Barnstaple, North Devon and well worth a visit. Broomhill also has a good restaurant.

I have been trying to grow a lot of dill in preparation for this adventure into Russian cuisine but the rather fine weather we have had in the last month has resulted in the plants peaking too soon. Much of the dill I planted is shooting up and producing flowers rather than more leaf.

I realised this too late, so the rapidly sown second batch of seed will no doubt be ready to pick just as the world cup is finishing.

To make a Sputnik # 2:

Shake the following over ice and strain into an ice filled 'Old-Fashioned' glass

1 shot Bacardi light rum
1 shot Martell cognac
2 shots freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 shot sugar syrup

Russia had a fairly easy first game against Saudi Arabia though it was far from dull as had been predicted in the press. No surprise though that the second days match of Spain vs Portugal was rather more entertaining.

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