Kazan is the capital of Tatarstan republic in Russia. It's almost a country within the country - Tatars living there have their own language, customs and, of course, food! We selected 5 dishes that even we, Russians, would like to taste in Kazan to feel the local spirit.
1. Tokmach 'Токмач' in Russian and in Tatar
It is a traditional noodle soup. The main ingredient is noodle, other ingredients can vary from chef to chef. The recipe has only one script rule - noodles are thrown into the ready broth and cooked for two minutes.
2. Pelmeni for the groom 'Пельмени для жениха' in Russian
As you may know, pelmeni is very popular dish here in Russia. Tatar's 'pelmeni for the groom' differs from Russian by size (they are very very small) and with very thin layer of dough. The dish is called 'pelmeni for the groom' as the mother of the bride gives these pelmeni to the son-in-law after the wedding ritual.
3. Echpochmak 'Эчпочмак' in Russian or 'өчпочмак' in Tatar
It is a triangular pastry, filled with minced beef, onion and potatoes. But the main difference from other pastries is not its form, but the method of preparation. The echpochmak is filled with raw meat and vegetables which are cooked with the dough.
4. Smetannik 'Cметанник' in Russian
Smetannik is a delicate cake made from dough and sour-cream as a filing. It is very similar to cheesecake both in appearance and taste. The secret of the Tatar cream is that the basis of the filling is sour cream or, sometimes, kaimak. There is no cottage cheese in it, such filling is traditional for similar cakes in other parts of Russia. Smetannik is one of the most common desserts in Kazan.
5. Сhak-chak 'Чак-чак' in Russian or 'Чәкчәк' in Tatar
It is a dough deep-fried in oil and drenched with hot honey. Usually, the fried balls are stacked in a mound in a special mould. Hazelnuts and dried foot also can be added in the mixture or as decoration.