Sunday, September 4, 2011

Russian Salad سلطة روسية

The Russian salad is a tasty traditional dish of the Russian cuisine, which has been subject to several changes: in the 18th century it was known as the "salad Genoa style", because it was one of the main courses to be served at gala lunches of the Ligurian aristocracy.

With all its different versions, the Russian salad is basically made of vegetables and mayonnaise, it is consumed in many countries, and it can be served as an appetizer, even if it is usually prepared for the festive season, such as Christmas.

In Italy there are many variants, according to taste and regions: we suggest here a base recipe, to which you can add at will tuna fish, ham, chicken, prawns, etc...
Wash and peel the potatoes and the carrots and dice them into pieces about the size of a green pea.

In the meanwhile boil separately the carrots, the potatoes and the peas (you can also steam them) in salted water, making sure that the vegetables remain crispy, not too tender (you'll need about 7-10 minutes for the potatoes, and 5-7 minutes for the carrots, depending on how big the pieces are).

Once finished cooking, drain the vegetables and let them cool down preferably in a colander to let the cooking water drip out and have them dry. In the meanwhile hard boil the 2 eggs, then place them under cold running water, peel them and let them cool down. Dice the pickled gherkins into very small pieces.

Once the vegetables are lukewarm, put them into a bowl, add the gherkins, then drizzle with oil (just a few drops), vinegar (1-2 teaspoons), salt and pepper. Later, once cooled down, add the mayonnaise and add salt, if necessary. Now you can choose whether to add the diced hard-boiled eggs into the Russian salad or, as we did, to use them to decorate the dish. Place the Russian salad in the fridge for at least an hour to cool down and to become flavoursome.

If you want to serve your Russian salad in a refined way, pour it into any mould lined with aluminium foil and place it in the fridge for at least an hour.

After such time, you can turn the mould upside down onto a serving dish, remove the aluminium foil and decorate the Russian salad with hard-boiled eggs, pickled gherkins, more mayonnaise and other ingredients, such as anchovies, capers, olives, etc...