Russians are really big on New Year's celebration. It is considered a family affair, yet the kids always tend to flock somewhere else, where they could be among their friends, away from the watchful parents' eye. It is a declaration of independence, adulthood and free spirit. Sometimes such gatherings can be stupid, unpleasant or even dangerous: once I escaped a New year party with my friend Irena in the middle of the night, without coats - because we unwittingly opened a door to some criminal crazy person...
But back to the good staff: ladies will dress up- fancy does not begin to describe it; the odour of perfume will drive away the fresh scent of the Christmas tree - oh, in a Russian home it stays!!! Unless you are very staunchly Orthodox, you will consume an enormous meal. The tables will be filled to the brim with smoked salmon and caviar, salad Olivier (a variation of a potato salad), pickled herring and herring in a "fur coat" - which is a salad based on herring; carrot salad, beet salad with garlic, cold beef, deviled eggs, hard salami thinly sliced, endless number of cheeses, pelmeni, leg of lamb, whole roasted goose or turkey, sometimes a roast piglet... At the final count down Russians must make a wish, write it down on a small piece of paper, burn the paper, drop it into their shampaigne and drink it!
Fancy dinner will be followed by dancing, flirting, singing, and long conversations... January 1 is the day of reconing...
Salad Olivier (my recipe - S.M.)
6 medium size potatoes, boiled but not crumbling
10 eggs, hard boiled
2 skinless chicken breasts, fully cooked,
1 medium size onion (or half of a large one)
1 jar of dill relish
2 cans of diced carrots with green peas
1 small can of chopped olives
Chop all ingredients into cubes of about 1/5 of an inch, mix in mayonneise
feeds 10-15 hungry people!
I love these movies!
- The Fall, directed by Tarsem
- Amelie, directed by Jean-Pierre Jennet
- Lord of the Rings, directed by Peter Jackson
- Moulan Rouge, directed by Baz Luhrman
- Moonsoon Wedding, directed by Mira Nair
- Australia, directed by Baz Luhrman
- Despereately seeking Susan, directed by Susan Seidelman
- Miss Pettigrew lives for a day, directed by Bharat Nalluri
Favorite books and authors
- Boris Vassiliev, historical novels
- C.Cherryh, Morgaine Sagas
- Ch.Dickens, The Bleak House
- George Martin, The Chronicles of Ice and Fire
- Gregory Frost, Shadow Bridge novels
- Heinrich Mann, Henry the IV
- J.R.R.Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings
- Jane Austin, Pride and Prejudice, Persuasion, Emma
- Robert Jordan, The Wheel of Time
- Sir Thomas Mallory, Le Mort D'Artur
- Ted Williams, Green Angel Tower
- Terry Goodkind, Magician's First Rule and the following books in this saga
- Thomas Mann, Joseph and his Brothers