Today I quickly whipped up one of my favorite Russian breakfast foods, syrniki. My friend El. and I call them “pancheesies.” They are a very common staple of Russian homecooking, kind of like hash browns and pancakes are the familiar staple of any American’s breakfast.
The recipe is as easy as pie (actually, easier than pie).
1 1/4 cup of farmers’ cheese (this is a cheese that is similar to goat cheese in consistency, but actually tastes like cottage cheese. It’s the closest equivalent here in the States to Russian cottage cheese called “tvorog,” and is fairly easy to find in most larger grocery stores)
1 large egg
2-3 tbs of sugar
1/2 cup flour
Mix all the ingredients well in a mixing bowl, until the consistency starts to look like slightly lumpy mashed potatoes
Using a spoon dipped in cool water to prevent sticking, scoop up a generous spoonful of the mix, and form into a ball, then flatten into a small pancake. Coat both sides of the pancake in a little bit of flour, and fry in hot vegetable oil in a deep skillet, turning over so that both sides are lightly golden brown.
Syrniki taste great with a dollop of sour cream, with a serving of your favorite jam or preserves, or just on their own, depending on how rich or sweet you want your breakfast to be. I also like them as an afternoon tea snack. I had mine with Yorkshire Gold tea from Taylor’s of Harrogate, and a spoon of June Taylor‘s fig & port preserves I picked up at the Farmers’ Market a while ago, and have been savoring since.
(Yes, that mug is great).
yummmm. i want some!
SHUTCHO MOUF!!~! That looks diddlyscrumptious!!!!
Those look fantastic. There’s not really a Polish equivalent but I’m VERY familiar with farmer’s cheese – my mother has found a way to make it herself! Would you like me to ask her for directions/the recipe?
Is that an “Ask Dr. Science” mug? If it is, that is truly awesome. Dr. Science is a local short show in Colorado Springs broadcast on NPR and it starts out with, “It’s time to ask Dr. Science! He knows more than you do!” “That’s right!” and at the end it’s, “That was ask Dr. Science. Because he knows more than you do.” “I have a Master’s Degree!… IN SCIENCE!”
It’s quite funny. What can I say.
@Sam: That IS a Dr. Science mug!! Good catch! :)
I would love the farmer’s cheese recipe, if you have the chance to ask!
I invented the name “pancheesies” when Ellen lived in Chicago (circa, I don’t know, 1992?) and I’m ecstatic to see that it has spread far and wide!!! Now if only I could make the pancheesies as well as Ellen’s mom…
Katy, you’re a genius! I think “pancheesies” is a fantastic name. It’s so appropriate. Ellen’s mom DOES make some pretty tasty ones. I think mine are pretty good, though :)
OMG… I want to drown in cheese pancake thingers. Also, my blood just slowed reviewing the pictures and recipe, but I DON’T CARE.
these remind me a bit of hispanic pupusas. mostly made in el salvador, they make version thruout latin america as well. you mix masa (corn flour) with water usually 2 to 1 part ratios. spice the flour mix with paprika or cumin or whatever you like + salt and pepper. Then you make a ball and form a hole in it. Fill the hole with cheese or meat filling, and close the dough over the hole. roll into a ball more firmly, then you pat them into patties and fry them in oil. Super good.
Hep – I love pupusas!!!! And I love the fermented cabbage that they serve with the pupusas if you order them at a restaurant. I’ve had them at El Zocalo on Mission at Valencia.
Now I just need to find a way to make those without flour for my low-carb diet. Looks amazing.
I’d say any substitute that you can find that is close in texture to plain white baking flour is good. In this case, it’s just a small amount used to keep the cheese from crumbling. Maybe try finely ground almond flour? I imagine it would also taste well with the recipe.
Oooh, I bet the almond flour variety would be amazing, like little marzipan cakes.
I just made them and ate them with my plum jam. They were delicious! I used ricotta that I had in the house and added a bit of salt. (Ricotta is kind of boring.) They puffed up a bit, but I think yours are probably lighter.