Monday, December 01, 2008

Thanksgiving Zakuski (Appetizers) Rundown

The highlight of Thanksgiving chez my parents is zakuski (Russian for appetizers). Zakuski are always served as part of a spread at holidays or big meals. Here’s a rundown of this year’s offerings. (For posts on Thanksgivings past, see this and this.)

Pickled herring, served on a round plate surrounded by olives: Er, this is more American than Russian, I think. C.

Smoked herring
, served with tomato wedges: Now this is real deal: salty, smoky and fatty. Almost as delicious as last year’s smoked mackarel. A.

Marinated tomatoes
: Spicy, briny and absolutely delicious. As always, the "drunken babushka" brand are the best. A+.

Korean carrot salad
. Here's a recipe. A basic, solid dish. B.

Marinated mushrooms: What’s a holiday meal without marinated mushrooms? B+.

Pickles. These came from a jar. C.

Pastries with cabbage filling. B-. Normally I'd go crazy for these, but there was just too much food.

Homemade sauerkraut. B. Like the pastries, the kraut got lost in the shuffle.

Fried zucchini slices topped with tomatoes. A! A guest brought these--an unusual and welcome starter.

We had turkey and mashed potatoes, too. A, as always.


Irene said...

I love LOVE pirozhki s kapustoy. Please post a recipe, please... And the zucchini sounds awesome, too!

adele said...

That's an impressive spread.

Still need to track down smoked fish...

Anonymous said...

mmmm.... I love marinated mushrooms. I haven't been able to find a brand here that I like. When we visit my boyfriend's parents in Ukraine, I always clean them out of their mushroom supply :p

Only one thing missing for me to call it a perfect spread: tongue!! (yum!!)

Mrs. M. said...

Irene--Actually, I didn't make the pirozhki--my mom did. But I have been planning to make pirozhki with mushrooms.

Adele--If all else fails, you could try Whole Foods or a local kosher market/deli.

Shushka--I've made my own marinated mushrooms, but I'm looking for a better recipe. I'll pass on the tongue. ;)

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