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Blini

 

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Making blini

 
 
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Blini are Russian thin pancakes (very similar to French crêpes) which are often served in connection with a religious rite or festival in several cultures. The word "blin" (singular of blini) comes from Old Slavic "mlin", which means "to mill".

Left: Blini served with sour cream.

Blins had a somewhat ritual significance for early Slavic peoples in pre-Christian times since they were a symbol of the sun, due to their round form. They were traditionally prepared at the end of the winter to honor the rebirth of the new sun during Maslenitsa (Масленица, Butter Week; also known as Pancake Week). This tradition was adopted by the Orthodox Church and is carried on to the present day, as the last week of dairy and egg products before Lent. Bliny are still often served at wakes, to commemorate the recently deceased.

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Blini can be made from wheat, buckwheat, or other grains, although wheat blini are most popular in Russia. They may be topped with butter, smetana (sour cream), fruit preserves or caviar.

Left: Making blini.

 
 
Try our recipe of blini
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