Goddess of Cake


Bliny Carnival
February 17, 2010, 17:04
Filed under: Cooking, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , ,

Now it is the season of carnivals all over the world, from the most famous one in Rio, to the Austrian Fastnacht, Venetian Masquerade and the rather timid Finnish Laskiainen that is celebrated by downhill sledge- riding and pea soup. Carnival – tradition is about turning everything upside down: kings become slaves and servants rulers, men become women and women men. For a short while, the rules bend and laws are made ridiculous, sacred profane, and the pompous reveals its true trivial nature, like a cancan dancer, kicking up her fishnet – stockinged leg… It’s a short lived illusion, a spectre of power, but something that brings a relief, an easiness to go on with the everyday life. The Trickster celebrates with a mad leer, takes over the King’s throne, and those with no power make the rules of the game.

My carnival this year was a night with Russian food and burlesque. Burlesque is the true carnivalistic entertainment: I’m in love with the big, tattooed ladies taking off their clothes on stage, with the madly cheering audience, and that  feeling of a rock concert, but without the pretense of music, just sheer sexiness and wildness and visual stimulation.  This party was like travelling with a time machine, full of creatures from other realms, men or women, animal or human, human or alien, 15th century or future, who cares, just corsettes – heels – glitter – colour – lace – frills  – and – futuristic contraptions everywhere you lay your eyes. I felt like innocent Alice in Wonderland, with my angel wings and white tutu.

We, meaning Namu Natasha ( Sweet Natasha), Esteri Pippuri (Esther the Pepper), Bliny Blinotshka (well.. something to do with bliny, obviously), Printemps (Spring)  and Angelita started the night with bliny, Russian pancakes that are traditionally eaten in Finland this time of the year.  The Russian blin or blintzke is a thin pancake, a crêpe, bought from a stall on the street and eaten as a snack. The Finnish blin is a thick fat pancake, made of sourdough,  finely served with caviar, sour cream, mushrooms and other delicacies in a festive occasion. It’s a short way to Russia, but quite obviously something happened on the way…

Buckwheat Bliny

At least six hours prior to baking your bliny, mix the following ingredients and let ferment in room’s temperature:

2,5 dl oat milk, luke warm

2,5 dl buckwheat flour

2,5 dl wheat flour

20 g yeast

Just before baking add:

2,5 dl beer

1 tsp salt

1 dl soy yogurt

You’ll need oil for frying

Fry the bliny in a frying pan, with lots of oil. Use medium heat, so that they will cook inside too.  Nicest bliny are fried in pancake pan. Flip them over a couple of times.

Sidedishes with Bliny

You should have many different sidedishes with bliny! Five is minimum in my opinion! Nice vegan things to go with your bliny are vegan seaweed based caviar (at least in Finland available), vegan sour cream, chopped red onion, chopped pickles, honey, and mashed avocado with a bit of lemon.  We also had these things:

Beetroot with Honey

Slice some beetroot thinly, and chop some garlic. Fry quickly with oil in a wok, add salt and plenty of honey.

Mushrooms with Sour Cream

I bought some wild mushrooms preserved in brine, and made a simple condiment of them by draining off the extra liquid and adding some chopped spring onions,  black pepper and vegan sour cream.