What I learned this week: Russian Cuisine, Faberge, and childhood memories

So I decided to start a series of post on my blog where I share things that I learned through the week. This will help provoke more regular posts, while sharing some neat and interesting things I discovered through the week.

In homeschool, we’re learning the World War I history, while also focusing on the Russian Revolution. The other day we learned about Faberge Eggs, by Peter Carl Faberge, a Russian jeweler who designed some lovely ‘eggs’ but also other things.

He made only 50 of them, each Easter for the Romanov family. Since then, a Faberge egg is any lovely designed egg that holds some trinket inside.

I remember helping a Russian friend of the family, an elderly woman named Alexandria, to polish the silverware. On the back of the utensils, I noticed a crest and Russian lettering. “What’s this?” I asked her. She peered over with her bifocals and said “Oh that is Gregory’s family crest and it says Faberge” She then added, “He was the royal goldsmith.”

I was stunned at how casual she was with this fact, and meanwhile. I actually polished Faberge silverware!

borshtWhile we’re learning about the Bolsheviks, I happened upon some Russian cuisine we might try. It’s fun to add in our studies some meals based on history and culture. Not that I’m a fan of Borscht. Ugh @ Beet soup! That was gross.

As a child, I remember Alexandria’s husband, Gregory, tell me about Borscht (in his heavy Russian accent). “We make this soup out of beetles.” He tells me. “Um, Gregory? That’s Beets.” I correct him. He chuckles back at me. “Yes, beetles” lol

I am not keen on making anything with beets (can’t stand them), so I found these recipes we might try instead;

pavalovaPavalova– Named after a Russian ballerina, this meringue type desert looks lovely as it must be yummy. Here’s a video on how to make them, and the ingredients are few. It seems the real magic comes from the technique.

I’m also intrigued with attempting to make Pirozhki (baked or fried buns with filling) or Pelmeni, which are Russian dumplings filled with meat.

While learning about the Romanovs (last Tsar of Russia), I also learned about the royal diseases that impacted history. Tsar Nicolas’ son had Hemophilia. One video by the BBC entitled Hemophilia and Porphyria – Royal diseases from Tainted Blood covered several royal families that had issues. It was interesting.

I’d love to learn Russian, so I’m currently exploring this site Russianlessons.net which teaches the writing as well as the speech. My son wants to stick with Spanish (Duolingo.com).

I’ll try to post things as I learn them. If you like this post, ‘like’, share, and comment. Let me know if you want more.

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