Winter’s Delights: Blinis and Fish Roe

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February is the best time with fish roe and perfect for blinis, the Russian pancakes with buckwheat. I learnt to make them long ago at grandma’s. Today I use her pan and not the one we got as a wedding gift.

This is how I make the batter:
2.5 dl whole milk
2 tsp yeast (fresh will give a better lift to the batter)
1 dl sour cream
1.5 dl buckwheat
1 dl flour (wheat)
1 tsp salt
1 egg yolk, 1 egg white

Dissolve the yeast into lukewarm milk. Add the salt, flour, sour cream and egg yolk. Let stay for 30 min. Beat the egg white and turn it in carefully. You can replace some of the liquid with mineral water if you think the blinis are too rich.
Fry in butter making smallish pancakes of 15 cm in diameter and 2 cm thick.
I fry the blinis and place them in oven before serving to keep them warm.

Serve with thick sour cream (smetana), fish roe, finely chopped onion and chives, pickled cucumber and honey.

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I usually serve blinis with two types of roe: salmon roe and vendace or lavaret roe which both come from freshwater fish, corogonus albula and coregonus lavaretus.

Blinis aren’t necessary an expensive meal. Enjoy the delicacies. Prepare a blini feast for your friends and enjoy the food and company. Only once have I had blinis with caviar, a long time ago in Moscow in a very posh restaurant. Served with champagne, how else!

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