Ermak Timofeich

The community of journalists rediscovering Siberia

An old Golendra recipe has been revived in Irkutsk

The Golendra people, compactly living in the Zalarinsky District of the Irkutsk Region, have a special attitude towards the older generation, cleanliness and bread. More than a hundred years ago, at the height of the Stolypin reform, people from Holland, along with traditions and rituals, agricultural implements and household utensils, brought the national cuisine to the distant and unfamiliar Siberia.

Today, it is unlikely anywhere, except for Pikhtinsk, Sredny Pikhtinsk and Dagnik, that you will see a winery - a smokehouse for meat and sausages. Only in these three villages you can taste potatoes (boiled pancakes), one of the main dishes of traditional weddings is hanging borsch, in which potatoes are served separately, with a bite, and also dumplings with a huge amount of fillings. Roasted quinoa is strongly associated with poverty, but the golendras think differently, frying young shoots in hemp oil. Native Siberians have never heard of drags - beet leaves stewed in cream.

Oven as an important ingredient

Most of the dishes from the Bug are still cooked according to old recipes, and some, for example, bread, have undergone changes. Over the years, housewives switched to fast yeast, giving up sourdough.

However, Irkutsk woman Evgenia Filippova in her bakery Zhito managed to revive the old recipe for product number one.

- About 12 years ago, my husband, unfortunately, fell ill, the doctors forbade him to eat bread from the store, - says Evgenia. - Then he brought sourdough into the house, I picked up the idea, and we began to bake whole grain bread - a laborious process, but worth it. I remembered the taste of my grandmother's bread. When we went to visit her, dad always said that we would eat bread "from a bunny." I don't know why, but I always said that. And the husband of my older sister told me that they used to have in the village called bread the pope. Therefore, all the time I wanted to restore this taste, because it is impossible to forget it. I tried a lot, experimented. Since the golendras came out of Europe, the culture of wheat bread was closer to them. We understood perfectly well that to get a real taste - you need a wood-burning stove. They began to look for a specialist who could fold such a stove, but in the end they found it, it turned out to be my cousin Leonid Gildebrant.

Putting a stove in the basement of an old house in the center of Irkutsk is an incredibly difficult task, if only because the first thing to do is to solve the question - where will the smoke go? Evgenia says that her husband unexpectedly found a through hole, probably in the old days, maybe a hundred years ago or more, the premises here were heated with a stove.

- The husband climbed through this pipe to the very top, there is even a photo where he is covered in soot, black. Now the smoke from the stove passes through special filters, through the water, and those around it simply do not notice.

Mass tasting of bread, already forgotten by many, took place on the anniversary of Pope Eugene - Ivan Zigmundovich Zelent, who in the second half of the 1990s worked as chairman of the Legislative Assembly of the Irkutsk region.

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