If you’ve never had Pirozhki (or Piroshki), you might want to see this. On the other hand, if you know what Pirozhki looks or tastes like, you should definitely see this!
Have you ever tried Pirozhki? I’ve never tasted or even seen it before. And neither had Seiji Nakazawa, our reporter and chef for the day, prior to cooking this dish. Well, the one thing we know for sure that it’s something commonly enjoyed in Russian homes.
If you’ve never had Pirozhki before, try saying the word ten times, and then try to imagine what it looks or tastes like! Nakazawa did just that, and this is the image he had in mind:
▼ A somewhat solidified block that consists of mainly cabbage and eggs (meats are optional), drenched in chili sauce. Also, he believed that Pirozhki should probably be made up of “piro” and “zhki” elements.
Considering that this dish can be cooked at home, the ingredients used should be readily available, so cabbage and eggs sound like a reasonable choice. On top of that, Nakazawa decided to go for salmon flakes, simply because “most Russian homes should have leftover salmon”. In Nakazawa’s visualization, these few ingredients, together with sliced cheese, should make up the “zhki” part of the dish.
Perhaps you’re wondering at this point, why chili sauce? According to Nakazawa, the sound “piro” makes him think of something red and spicy, and since the Russian flag has red in it, he’s confident that he’s got this one right!
We shan’t spoil this any further for you. Go ahead and witness the making of this Nakazawa-style “Pirozhki”!
▼ Ingredients: Cabbage, egg, cheese, milk, salmon flakes, Somi Syantan Deluxe (a seasoning paste most commonly used in Chinese cuisine), sweet chili sauce, ground black pepper
▼ Stir fry the cabbage.
▼ Add in the egg, followed by cheese. Try to compact it into a block.
▼ Add in the salmon flakes.
▼ And the finishing touch… Piro Power!! Be generous with the chili sauce! A dash of black pepper will do the trick.
“The first taste that fills my mouth is the chili sauce. Following which comes the mellow taste of the egg, the fibrous crunch of the cabbage, and the savoury impact of the salmon. It’s good! This should go well with rice!! Well, the acidity from the chili sauce combined with the fishy smell of the salmon makes it taste a little like vomit, but what can you expect from homemade food. On a separate note, there’s no trace of the cheese, but I guess that happens with home cooking too.”
Nakazawa seemed to be fairly pleased with his piece of work, but in order to get a fair review, we had the rest of our Japanese editorial team try the dish! If you’re from Russia, just bear in mind that the following responses are directed at Nakazawa’s imaginary “Pirozhki” and we have no doubt that the real deal looks and tastes better than this experimental dish.
▼ Ryou: “I see…”
▼ Yuuichiro Wasai: “Ah……”
▼ Yoshio: “Yuck.”
▼ P.K. Sanjun: “Ah, I can’t deal with this sort of thing.”
▼ Mr. Sato: “It’s not inedible.”
▼ Go Hatori: “Sorry… I don’t like the taste of it~”
▼ Shinomiya: “Um… it doesn’t taste bad…? Wait, it tastes bad.”
▼ Masanuki Sunakoma: “Erm… ha..haha…”
▼ Kawarano: “What’s this garbage…”
▼ Momomura Momo (Pouch): “Eeew…” *cries*
▼ Mariko Ohanabatake (Pouch): “Is this for real?”
Not too surprisingly, none of our Japanese writers have ever eaten an authentic Pirozhki. We’re not sure if trying the Nakazawa-style version of it has affected their inclination to try the real thing in the future, but we’re glad to announce that there were no casualties.
▼ We bought an actual Pirozhki from the food department at Isetan.
▼ Nakazawa: “I can’t taste the ‘piro’ in it at all…”
Perhaps Nakazawa could use some tips from Russian maids and revisit the challenge sometime. If you’re game enough to try Nakazawa’s version of it, follow the steps in the video and try at your own risk, but be sure to tell us how it went!
Images © RocketNews24
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Follow Joan on Twitter, where she occasionally shares reviews of things more palatable than Nakazawa’s “Pirozhki”.
[ Read in Japanese ]