Russians do not drink cocktails… They feel that vodka should be imbibed in its purest form, unadulterated by silly stuff like juice, fruits, etc. Hence, in the Russian tradition, vodka is enjoyed in the form of shots, usually “chased” by something salty or pickled. Russian cooking mostly follows a very similar philosophy – simple ingredients and simple recipes where the vegetables, grains and meats are allowed to shine on their own, without a lot of complicated sauces, garnishes and spices to muddle the flavors. Growing up in a multicultural Soviet family (my mom is Armenian, my dad is Russian), I was exposed to a lot of multicultural cooking. My recipes are inspired in equal parts by Armenian (similar to Greek) and Russian cooking, but also in smaller parts by the melting pot of cuisines that is the United States, which I have called my home for the past 20+ years. So, on this blog, you will find recipes for hearty borsh and beef-and-pork dolma, done in a way that my mom did it when I was growing up, along with Italian or French-inspired recipes, or ones that I created myself, just using healthy ingredients I had in the pantry and the fridge!
My forté is being able to adapt traditionally complicated recipes to a fast-paced lifestyle of young working adults and having fresh, delicious dinners on the table in less than an hour. I hope that my recipes inspire more people to cook at home, because that is the healthiest way to eat. I don’t believe you have to sacrifice anything! Not your time, not your health and not the taste of your food. You can have it all! So stay tuned and enjoy!
P.S. I named this blog the “Russian Martini” after the first time my husband Brian (then boyfriend) took a shot of vodka with my father at one of my mom’s big Russian/Armenian dinners, and chased it with – what else – a martini olive.