Cabbage

A Russian Peasant Party

February 17, 2014

Food52's Managing Editor Brette Warshaw is throwing no-stress weeknight parties for anyone, anytime, and (almost) every kitchen. You're invited.

Today: If you ever needed an excuse to serve peasant food at a dinner party, this is it. 

Cabbage soup from Food52 

I hear you over there, moaning. Oy, it's so cold. Oy, it snowed again. Oy, my socks are soaked through. Oy, Mercury is in retrograde and I fell face-first into a pile of slush, and not one person -- not one! -- stopped to help me.

If you needed an excuse to serve peasant food to your guests at a dinner party, you've got it.

Call it a Sochi-themed dinner party. Stew some cabbage and meat, boil some potatoes, roll up some blintzes, and take some shots of vodka. Turn on the Games, and watch some ice dancing. If you're not warmed up -- and cheered up! -- by the end of the night, I will personally ship you to Siberia.

The Menu

Vodka
Russian Sweet and Sour Cabbage Soup
Dill Pickle Potato Salad
Lemony Cheese Blintzes

The Plan

The night before: Make your cabbage soup, start to finish; it will be dramatically better when you make it this far ahead. Stick it in the fridge; you'll heat it up and adjust the seasoning before the party. If you want to get everything out of the way, you can make your potato salad now, too.  

Potato salad from Food52

When you get home from work: Make sure your vodka is in the freezer. If you haven't made the potato salad yet, do it now; it'll need time to cool down before the party. Make the filling and the batter for your blintzes, and keep them in the fridge.

Party time: Get that vodka flowing! Turn on the Games and put on some klezmer. Get your soup back on the stove, and reheat it gently. Taste and adjust seasoning. When it's ready and everyone's tipsy, get everyone seated. Dinner is served.

When it's time for dessert: Head into the kitchen, and make the pancakes for your blintzes. Take them out to the party, along with the filling; make everyone roll their own. Crisp them all up on the stove, then serve -- and don't worry if they're messy. 

Blintzes from Food52

 

7 Comments

ATG117 February 18, 2014
Love this menu, too. I'd probably advocate making the crepes for the blintzes ahead of time, though.
 
Marian B. February 17, 2014
Pickle potato salad is the new black sequined ice dancing costume!
 
AntoniaJames February 17, 2014
Yes, but mandatory style point deductions will result if the pickle salad doesn't actually include bits of homemade kosher dills. Bonus points will, on the other hand, be awarded for the inclusion of bits of the garlic (now also pickled) used to flavor the brine. (Incidentally, Paul Virant's recipe for kosher dills, in his "Preservation Kitchen," produces the best re-purposable, if that's a word, brine, ever. The recipe calls for champagne vinegar, but I use high-quality Oak Barrel Winemaking's white wine vinegar, as it's more affordable in the quantities needed to satisfy our 4-dozen-jars/year pickle habit. That's just the kosher dills, mind you.) ;o)
 
AntoniaJames February 17, 2014
I'd just add one thing here: instead of turning on the Olympics, read aloud passages from Ian Frazier's "Travels in Siberia," one of the most interesting travel books ever written. Love the menu suggested and the game plan, though given my schedule, I would break the primary tasks into more components, taking care of as many as possible 2 - 3 days or more before the party. (I can't count on leaving the office at a set time, given the nature of my practice.) ;o)
 
Midge February 17, 2014
Love everything about this menu, no slush needed.
 
aargersi February 17, 2014
YUM! Even though it's in the 70's here. Yep, that was gloating :-)
 
Catherine L. February 17, 2014
Oy, not Siberia! That soup looks just about perfect.