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Vinigret Salad


This salad is a very popular Russian dish that features the often stereotyped Russian staples of potatoes and beets. It shares many of its ingredients with Olivye, and so the two are frequently served simultaneously at large dinners during the salad/appetizer course. It is often referred to as “Vinaigrette Salad” on American websites, which makes sense given that the dressing is a type of vinaigrette — a mixture of vegetable oil and plain white vinegar. Vinigret salad is also one of the few vegetarian dishes I can think of in Russian cuisine and is still hearty.

Vinigret Salad

Yields: 8-10 servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 large potatoes
  • 4 carrots
  • 4-6 beets, depending on the size
  • 1 small/medium-sized white or yellow onion
  • 6 pickles
  • 2 C sauerkraut
  • vegetable oil (corn, sunflower, olive) to taste
  • vinegar to taste
  • ground black pepper to taste

Directions

Boil potatoes, beets, and carrots in a large pot until all vegetables are tender. Some recipes ask that you boil the vegetables separately so that the beets don’t stain the other vegetables red.  However, ultimately you will be mixing all the vegetables and the whole salad will turn beet-red, so I feel like that step is unnecessary and wasteful.

Once cooked and cooled down, peel all the vegetables. I use a knife over a peeler as it wastes less of the vegetable but still gets the job done.  Cut potatoes, carrots and beets into cubes and move to a large bowl or pot.

Dice the pickles and onions and add to the other vegetables. Add the sauerkraut and mix everything together. The mixture should be a balance of sweet beets and carrots and hearty potatoes, with a tangy sourness from pickles and sauerkraut. I prefer my Vinigret on the more sour side, so I personally would add more sauerkraut and pickles than not.

When ready to eat, dress the salad with a tablespoon of vegetable oil of your choosing (back in Belarus we used predominantly sunflower seed oil, so I get nostalgic for that, but any oil will work) and a teaspoon of white vinegar (add more if you want the salad to be more sour). Sprinkle some ground black pepper and mix everything. Enjoy!

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