Friday, August 12, 2005

Astrakhan’s uha - Soup

Astrakhan is an ancient city of about 2 million people in the delta of the greatest Russian river, Volga, and it is on the shores of the Caspian Sea and also riverside.
Astrakhan is a famous center of catching and cultivation of the sturgeons, and a center of the productions of black caviar.
In the “good old times” there were plenty of sturgeons in the Volga delta. Now, there are much fewer of them, but sturgeons are still common food for Astrakhan’s region’s inhabitants.
This is one of the authentic recipes of how they make fish soup – “uha” in Russian.

Ingredients for 6-8:

2 lb sturgeon head
1 lb sturgeon fillet
2 medium tomatoes
2 medium shallot onions
1 tbsp uncooked rice
3 tbsp sour cream (optional)
1 egg yolk (optional)
Greens: 3 small stalks dill, 3 small stalks parsley, 3 bay leaves
Black pepper and salt on taste

Method:

Split sturgeon head into 4 pieces.
Cut 2 shallot onions thinly.
Pour 1/2 gallon water in a pan; add salt, pepper, onion, bay leaves, and sturgeon head.
Boil for about 1 hour on low heat.
Then take off the fish bones and filter a broth.
Cut tomatoes into medium pieces.
Add rice and tomatoes to the broth, and boil for 10 minutes.
Cut sturgeon to medium pieces, take-out the bones, add sturgeon to the pan and boil for 25 minutes on low heat.
Pour cut greens in the pan.
Optional: Mix sour cream and egg yolk, stir until even consistency, add to pan and mix well.

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