An Instant Pot Sviata Vecheria – Ukrainian Christmas Eve Menus

Christmas Eve is coming soon, as they say.  I say it’s the most important Ukrainian food holiday of the year.

Sviata vecheria is an overwhelming meal to make.  But, a lot of the cooking time can be sped up using the Instant Pot with the recipes here on Instant Ukrainian.

A small bowl of kutiaHolubtsi / Cabbage rolls ready to eatFinished mashed beans piled in a serving dishBorscht in a bowl ready to eatMushroom vushkaVarenyky - Pyrohy Dough
Instant Pot Braised Red CabbagePidpenky with gravy ready to be servedCompote - stewed fruit with almonds ready to servePampushky - Ukrainian Donuts with poppy seed and raisin filling
There are a lot of options for making a traditional or more modern version of the Sviata vecheria meal.

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Modern Instant Pot Kutia

This is a more modern version of kutia. My baba liked the addition of the dried fruit and nuts – it’s more extravagant than her Traditional Kutia recipe.  This is my “healthier” version.

What’s kutia and how do I say it?

Kutia or Kutya (pronounced coo-tcha) is one of the most important dishes in all of Ukrainian cuisine.  It’s a big hassle to make – but not with an Instant Pot.

This is boiled wheat.  Pretty basic but wheat is the centre of Ukrainian culture and farming.  When I was younger, I was told that the yellow half of the bottom of the Ukrainian flag symbolized the wheat fields and the blue band on the top symbolized the sky.  Now, that there’s Wikipedia, I’ve learned the flag pre-dates Christianity in the Ukraine but that story developed around 1845.  To sum up, wheat’s  important.

This recipe saves you from soaking the wheat overnight and over 2 hours of cooking time!

White wheat kernels arranged in one layer Continue reading “Modern Instant Pot Kutia”

Traditional Instant Pot Kutia

Whether it’s Kutia or Kutya (pronounced coo-tcha), it’s probably one of the most seminal Ukrainian dishes.  It’s also one of the most time consuming.

The history of kutia

Kutia is a Christmas Eve dish but – in reality – its roots have very little to do with Christmas.  So, let’s travel back a few thousand years to the Ukraine.  What was going on? Growing wheat.  So, they boiled the wheat.

But, it’s so much more than just boiled wheat.  Ukrainians (and everyone nearby) celebrated the winter solstice before they adopted Christianity in 997 AD.  Kutia is the centrepiece of this winter solstice dinner that was adapted into what is now the Christmas Eve meal: Sviata Vechera.
Wheat berries meet the Instant PotThis recipe saves the overnight soaking time plus 2 hours of cooking time over the traditional recipe!
Continue reading “Traditional Instant Pot Kutia”