Today’s international food (hint: it isn’t Irish)


So today Marina tells me she’s going to make blinis and she wants some of my fried apples for it. Oh, goody! I finished washing the outside windows as fast as possible, went back to the annex, and heated up the apples I cooked last night.

The apples came from the Mill’s garden. They’ve all been stuffed into the shed with the lawn mower, and some of them are not very pretty. Once they’ve had the bad parts cut out and are peeled, however, they make really fine fried apples. I used some Irish butter, some white sugar (didn’t have any brown, but that’s what I’ll use next time), cinnamon, and nutmeg. Last night I ate some with custard.

OK, back to the story. I arrived at the cottage in time to watch Marina make the last few blinis (pancakes, or crepes). She says making them remind her of her granny back in Kalingrad, where she grew up. Her grandmother was from Siberia, and would come to stay with them for a year and a half, then go back home to Siberia “to die.” Then, when she didn’t die, she’d come back for another year and a half, then had to get back to Siberia in case she was going to die. It was very important for her to die in her homeland. Marina tells me she did this from the time she was very little until she was 17. Her granny died at age 95, at home in Siberia, of course.

Making the blinis was pretty much like making any very thin pancake. The batter is very runny, and you pour a bit into a frying pan and swirl it around till it covers the bottom. A very few minutes later, you lift the blini and turn it over to cook on the other side. Marina buttered each blini as it came out of the pan.

We sat down to blinis with cooked apples and tea (green with lotus flower, ginger, and lemon). It was a lovely teatime snack. Danu, the Weimaraner, danced around begging, with both of us telling her to ‘go to bed’ and stop hovering.

Denis, Marina’s son, finally showed up to eat the last of the blinis and apples. We didn’t leave too many, they were really good!

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