Russian Monday: "Kasha" - Millet Porridge with Butternut Squash & Golden Raisins



Kasha is a special dish in Russian cuisine - very common and unremarkable, nevertheless having its own special worldwide reputation in line with borsch, Russian cabbage soup, kvass and vodka. Kasha is a subject of national pride, but first of all - the peak of ancient Russian culinary arts.

Kasha has always been a ceremonial, customary dish at the forefront of the feast table, for example during wedding receptions. Sometimes word “kasha” has been used to name the feast itself, or even peace agreement sealed during such feast made by former enemies. Word “kasha” also has been used for certain collective actions - large gathering or even military campaign. Apparently, some historians claim that all feasts and banquets in ancient Russia have been either “kasha-feasts” or otherwise, i.e. less significant by importance. Chronicles of 12th-14th century mention how Earl Alexander Nevsky has organized "big kasha" in cities of Toropets and Novgorod. Kasha can be really filling indeed, but use of this word for naming feast, was meant to have special significance of bringing people together to make them close to each other.

"To cook kasha" means not only to cook a dish, but figuratively speaking it means to do important work together, to build strong and trusting relationship.

For more Russian recipes, visit Russian Cuisine page.

Pumpkin 1 Pumpkin 2

History of millet kasha goes far back in time. It is mentioned even in a Bible. In ancient Russia millet kasha has been very popular. Each household had their own recipe of making hearty and tasty kasha unlike any other. Grains and cereals today are cheap, very common and at the same time it is nutritious product available to anyone. Grains can be easily cooked at any kitchen. Diet millet kasha with pumpkin will provide your body with positive energy for the whole day and keep your body slim and fit.



Notes:

  • 1 cup dry, raw millet yields about 3 1/2 cups cooked millet
  • to cook 1 cup of millet you'll need 2 cups of water, if you want to make a creamier porridge, increase the milk or water to 3 cups
  • you can purchase millet at stores like Whole Foods or online from Bob's Red Mill

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups millet, rinse well in warm water
  • 3 1/2 cups of milk or water
  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins (or dried cranberries / currents)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter

Directions:

In a medium cooking pan combine millet with milk, butternut squash, raisins, salt and honey. Bring to a boil. Simmer over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for about 15-20 minutes. Millet grains and squash should be soft. Add more milk if needed if grains aren’t soft and continue to cook. Serve with butter. You may also add maple syrup. Serve hot or warm.

Have a good breakfast, lunch or even dinner-)

Kasha 3

2 comments:

Elen Smirnova said...
August 12, 2013 at 1:05 AM  

Omg! This is my favourite breakfast in autumn, when we have fresh pumpkins, sold in the markets)) Good and healthy)))

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...
August 12, 2013 at 1:40 AM  

A very healthy porridge. I think I'd eat that dish for lunch rather than for breakfast.

Cheers,

Rosa

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