It has now been almost exactly two years since I decided to open the doors of my humble dwelling in Wood Green to all sorts of wonderful randoms, to cook for them, to explore what this mysterious Russian food is or could be…
The original Russo-Soviet Brunchclub became Russian Revels eventually when I’ve been joined by amazing Karina Baldry and here we are now, with everything from Cosmonaut party, to Futurist dinner and Anna Karenina feast.
It’s been great to be the gang leaders, but we felt now was the time to open the doors to all of you, our compatriots and those willing, to hear your story, to taste your food – for us, humble Russian Revels, to learn and marvel from you!
And so on the Mothering Sunday of 10 March 2013 at RosSotrudnichestvo (Russian cultural centre in the UK) we held an event imaginatively called Покулинарим, or Cooking with a Story (literally let’s rustle something up, let’s cook).
We wanted to see all sorts of different creations from all sorts of different people. We wanted to hear people’s stories behind their cakes. There’s always one, especially when the story comes with a tale of migration.
The theme was set around three Russian iconic desserts: Napoleon (thousand layer cake), Medovik (layered honey cake) and Sharlotka (apple sponge cake). The idea was simple: some people brought a cake of their choosing, others came as guests to enjoy the cake fest.
And oh boy did we enjoy the cake.
23 cakes to be precise.
Not to kill the guests with the sugar overload we made a few savouries, such as borsch in a boat and potato cakes with caramelised onions and fresh horseradish.
To carry on with the (admittedly unusually for us) traditional theme, we invited a glorious ensemble of Russian folk music called Smorodina.
Kids had their own (board!) room to make quite quirky cards – mothers’ day after all!
And the winners?
Gosh, choosing was an ordeal. But here you go:
Irina Gurjajeva for her unusual caramel and nut Napoleon (right)
Irina Kennerly with her light as a feather Sharlotka (left)
Svetlana Battelry for her amazing Medovik intricately decorated(second left)
Over the next few days I will be posting recipes of each cake with more pictures. The plan is to (ahem) eventually publish a book about the adventures of Russian Revels with these – and many other – amazing recipes and stories featuring.
But needless to say there were so so many ridiculously delicious cakes, and so if you liked a particular number (the judging was anonymous with each cake allocated a number), let us know!
And for now – eat with your eyes, dear comrades!