Russian Pastries, Cookies, Etc... Need Ideas!

Baking By KoryAK Updated 8 Sep 2008 , 5:44am by KoryAK

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 2:57am
post #1 of 30

I am doing a finger pastry event for a lady on Saturday who would like a Russian theme. We are doing Russian tea cookies (same like Mexican Wedding or Tea Cakes ... silly how the same things has so many names!) but I need at least 2 other items (pastry or dessert type). I can find recipes online but I have no idea how these things taste and a lot of them sound strange, quite frankly. These items will be going on American palates so that needs to be kept in mind. Anyone??? (please?)

29 replies
playingwithsugar Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 3:40am
post #2 of 30

Wow, KoryAK, that's a tough one. My family is from that general region, but they were all farmers who were so poor that they had enough just to worry about what was for dinner. And unfortunately, that's the way most of Eastern Europe is, even today.

You can make some fruit-filled pierogi. Blueberry with sweetened cream cheese (like cheesecake) were my favorites as a child, but my grandmother bought them from the church, so I have no recipe to offer.

Did you do a Google on russian pastry recipes?

Theresa icon_smile.gif

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 4:07am
post #3 of 30

Yeah, and half of them were meat filled lol

playingwithsugar Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 4:11am
post #4 of 30

I saw that when I looked, too.

Would you possibly be able to have a portable frying pan there? You could fry up some blinis and top them with fresh fruit and whipped cream, almost like a shortcake.

Blinis are bite-sized pancakes which are cooked in butter, then topped with sweet or savory toppings.

Theresa icon_smile.gif

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 4:42am
post #5 of 30

No, I won't be staying at the event. I will keep looking and thinking.....

JanetPlanet Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 5:13am
post #6 of 30

How about some gingerbread somethings decorated in the style of Kraach here? Well no sane person could do it that way except her, but if you can get the "feel"... She's from Czechoslavkia ~ close enough? Here's her profile page...

...and her website is shown there. She makes some very pretty heart-shaped gingerbreads too. Here's the link to that page.

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 5:01pm
post #7 of 30

Wow her stuff is really beautiful! Wish she spoke english icon_smile.gif

Any other ideas guys? What are some ingredients/components that just smack of Russia? Then maybe I can just make something up with them...

millermom Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 5:56pm
post #8 of 30

OK, here's one that may or may not be practical given your time frame, and may not be worth it if you are not getting paid. It's called "pashka." (sp?)

My dad is a Russian linguist, and when I was a kid, we lived in Germany where the Army had a Russian institute. Just about everyone on base was studying Russian, so the wives were always sharing Russian cooking. This is one my mom made a lot, and my brothers and I loved it, so I think it would be pleasing to American palettes.

It's not a pastry, but it is sweet. The Russians eat it with a certain bread, but we just ate it plain. It could also be served with plain, unsalted crackers.

You need:
5 lb. baking (farmer's) cheese or ricotta
9 yolks of hard boiled eggs
3/4 lb. sweet unsalted butter
1/4 pint heavy cream
1 1/2-2 lb powdered sugar (to taste)
2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
fruit cake jellies (candied fruit)

To make:
-Drain the cheese in a cloth until very dry. (Ricotta may already be dry enough)
-Mash the egg yolks through a strainer
-Cream the butter and sugar
-Whip the cream until stiff
-Then mix all of these components in a mixer until a thick paste forms (about the consistency of marzipan maybe?)
-Add the candied fruit

You could roll it into balls, or let people serve themselves with a spoon. It is VERY rich, so portions should be small.

Hope this helps. Good luck with your baking!

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 6:06pm
post #9 of 30

That sounds killer! Thank you so much! Yes, this is a paid gig so I'm not worried about that. Perhaps I could pipe it onto a puff dough square and garnish with the candied fruit? Do you think that would be ok?

millermom Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 6:37pm
post #10 of 30

It's worth a try! It's pretty thick, though.

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 7:38pm
post #11 of 30

I'm thinking I may thin it down with more cream....

millermom Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 7:46pm
post #12 of 30

It can't hurt. And it sounds like it doesn't have to be exactly authentic to the tee. The idea is probably to give everyone a little "taste" of Russia! icon_smile.gif

BTW--Happy Birthday! party.gif

Good luck, and PM me to let me know how things turn out!

KoryAK Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 7:54pm
post #13 of 30

Thanks! And I will. I really appreciate the recipe - I was having a hard time with this!

We are also going to do a "pierogie" made with sugar cookie dough and ___ filling. What would be good to out inside, considering the theme? My friend suggested citrus and cinnamon as thats whats in russian tea (so she said). Any hints there?

millermom Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 8:40pm
post #14 of 30

Don't know about the pierogie (SP?) filling. The only ones I've had had a meat filling. I would think any kind of fruit/citrus filling would work. We did have this a lot when I was a kid, and especially when we were in Germany. Sounds very appropriate!

I mentioned this thread to my parents, and they reminded me that baklava is also eaten in parts of southern Russia. There are many recipes out there for it. I don't know that I have a specific one. I made it once, and I think the recipe came off the box of phillo dough.

millermom Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 8:54pm
post #15 of 30

Aha! Here's an idea for a filling. It's a Russian fruit pudding.

2-17 oz. cans apricots pitted and drained
1/2 c. lemon jc.
Water as needed
3 Tbsp. corn starch

-Blenderize fruit and its juice until smooth. Add lemon juice.
-Measure the puree and add enough water to equal 4 cups.
-Heat over med. heat just to a boil
-Mix corn starch with 1/4 c. water and add to the fruit gradually, stirring constantly
-gently boil 3 min
-remove from heat and cool to lukewarm

Usually, you would then pour it into a bowl and chill for 4 hrs., and serve with whipped cream; but I can't see why you couldn't fill the pierogies with it.

I hope this info has been helpful. Didn't mean to hijack the thread, but it's not often that someone can use all these Russian recipes, and my family and I rarely eat them anymore...I'm too busy most of the time, and my parents are alone so they don't do that much fancy cooking.

Again, good luck, and I'd love to hear how things turn out!

jojo0676 Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 8:57pm
post #16 of 30

Rugala is a great pastry and I believe it is Russian. They are a finger food, perfect for tea.

Mary Jo

malishka Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:04pm
post #17 of 30

hello there,
KoryAK, I happen to be Russian and the cake of choice for almost every Russian I know is called "Napolian cake". I have never personally made it myself, but eat it at every Russian function. It is amazing!!! (no buttercream or fondant required.)
I'm wondering if you can google it and get the recipe. You can cut the cake into little squares to serve as a pastry.
Also in my neck of the Russian woods, people used to eat Halava. I buy it at my local Floridian supermarket. You can also cut that up into little square pieces and serve.
I will try to come up with more ideas for ya.

malishka Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:06pm
post #18 of 30

Oh, just came up with another one.
A roulet with a sweet poppyseed paste inside. We used to eat it in Russia all the time.

moonliter Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:14pm
post #19 of 30

just an idea: do a regular cake but in the shape of that famous Russian govt building that is very colorful, i think the Kremlin? here is a picture off of google:
or find another image on google.
that way you are still on the Russian theme.
Maybe someone else knows the correct name for the building.

dinas27 Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:15pm
post #20 of 30

not exactly 'russian' but I the most popular ukrainian pastries are poppy seed roll and scuffles.
we never use raisins or nuts in the filling

Scuffles are my absolute favorite cookie. They are soooooooooooo good straight out of the freezer. Yes that means they freeze and thaw very well. Also - homemade doughtnuts are a very big traditional thing where I grew up.

malishka Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:19pm
post #21 of 30

I'm getting very nostalgic here.

I am craving a poopyseed roll in the worst way.

millermom Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:28pm
post #22 of 30
Originally Posted by malishka

I happen to be Russian and the cake of choice for almost every Russian I know is called "Napolian cake". I have never personally made it myself, but eat it at every Russian function. It is amazing!!!

I thought there HAD to be someone Russian on CC! icon_smile.gif

vetaAL Posted 3 Sep 2008 , 9:39pm
post #23 of 30

I wouldn't do "kisel'" as pudding, to russian people it is rather a drink, not a food.
Tort Napoleon is nice and could be done ahead of time (there's many recipes on the web, try here -
We do a lot of honey based pastries and breads. boiled cream cookies, pastries from rye and oat flour.

malishka Posted 4 Sep 2008 , 12:52pm
post #24 of 30
Originally Posted by millermom

Originally Posted by malishka

I happen to be Russian and the cake of choice for almost every Russian I know is called "Napolian cake". I have never personally made it myself, but eat it at every Russian function. It is amazing!!!

I thought there HAD to be someone Russian on CC! icon_smile.gif

Yes, we are lurking around everywhere. lol icon_wink.gif

I was also thinking that you can make cup cakes. The tops of the cupcakes you could decorate like the tops of the kremlin.
when I was little I used to call the Kremlin "the house with the ice cream cone tops". Look at some pictures of the Kremlin, you'll see what I mean. It is gorgeouse decorated with many different colors.

millermom Posted 4 Sep 2008 , 1:53pm
post #25 of 30
Originally Posted by malishka

Yes, we are lurking around everywhere. lol icon_wink.gif

I hope you didn't think for a second that I meant that in a negative way!! I am just constantly amazed that the internet has made this such a small world. There are people from so many backgrounds on here, that's what makes it such a great website!

What you are calling the Kremlin, I think is what we used to call St. Basil's or something like that. We had a small wooden replica of it when I was young. That would be beautiful made into a cake! A lot of work, though. Not sure my skills are up to it, but I'd love to see it!

I think that's funny that you thought those were ice cream cones. icon_lol.gif

vetaAL Posted 4 Sep 2008 , 2:07pm
post #26 of 30

I agree with millermom: the colorful creation is Cathedral of saint Basil the Blessed. Kremlin itself, while beautiful in form only done in two colors and white.
There is also Cathedral of the Savior on Spilled Blood in St.Petersburg that even more ornate then St.Basil.
I'd love to see either one done as cake.

malishka Posted 4 Sep 2008 , 2:10pm
post #27 of 30

I didn't take anything in a negative way at all. You are right, there are so many people from so many backgrounds, it's really amazing!

I think a kramlin cake would be a bit difficult to make and very time consuming. That's why I had suggested cup cakes. There could be a great big mound of a buttercream swirl on top of each cup cake in different colors to symbolize the Kremlin.
And the little peaks could be made out of gum paste or fondant and stick out of the middle.

KoryAK Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 11:07pm
post #28 of 30

Ok, so the pashka recipe is DELICIOUS! I didn't dry out the ricotta so its pretty wet, nowhere near marzipan. I'm chilling it overnight to see if the butter inside will set it up more. And its super fantastic on the puff dough. We will also be doing russian tea cookies (duh) and the citrus-cinnamon "pierogi" . I'll let you know how the customer likes it!

millermom Posted 6 Sep 2008 , 8:24pm
post #29 of 30

So glad you like it! I'm sure the customer will too. icon_smile.gif

KoryAK Posted 8 Sep 2008 , 5:44am
post #30 of 30

I got behind so I skipped the more labor intensive and not so authentic pierogie and went with the rugala, subbing orange for apricot marmalade as I didn't want to go to the store. Those were good too. Probably won't hear from the lady unless it was bad - just the type. But thanks all for the help!!

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