Instant Pot Ukrainian Compote – Stewed fruit

With all of the hectic activity around the holidays, it’s nice to have something that’s super easy.  On Christmas Eve, a fruit compote (or stewed fruit) made with dried fruit is a traditional end to the meal.  The Instant Pot makes the dish amazingly easy and much less time consuming than soaking the fruit overnight.

I use prunes, dried apricots, dried apple rings and raisins.  But, you can use any combination of dried fruits.

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Baba’s best perohe-varenyky-pyrogy dough

What would make a woman who made pyrogy (peroghies, perohe, varenyky, and so on) change the recipe that she had used for over fifty years?  Here it is – the best dough recipe ever.  Or at least my baba thought so.

This is a soft dough that’s easy to roll out and shape.  It’s just the right ratio of everything – and a cup of butter or margarine can’t hurt.  The dough doesn’t use the Instant Pot but the fillings will.

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Pampushky – Ukrainian Donuts with poppy seed and raisin filling

Pampushky are a traditional Christmas dessert. Starting with a bread dough, they are deliciously filled with poppy seeds and dried fruit and deep fried.  My grandmother used to make prune pampushky.   But, here I’m making poppy seed and raisin filling.

It’s a recipe that only uses the Instant Pot for the rising for the yeast dough.  You can also put the dough in a warm place – like an oven.  But, this is not a quick recipe.

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Instant Pot Pidpenky – Dried Mushrooms with Gravy

This traditional recipe works with any kind of dried mushrooms – morels, cepes, or shiitake.  And, using the Instant Pot saves more than an entire day of soaking time.  If you want to forgo even that hydration time, use fresh mushrooms like cremini.

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Instant Pot Braised Red Cabbage

For Christmas Eve, I like to make braised red cabbage.  It’s not a Ukrainian recipe – but what Ukrainian doesn’t like cabbage?  (Ukrainians are allowed to not like cabbage)

This braised red cabbage is colourful and easy to make ahead of time.  Just refrigerate and reheat when you’re ready to serve it.

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Mushroom Vushka – Dumplings for borscht

These beautiful little boiled dumplings (also known as tiny varenyky and ooshka) are filled with tasty mushrooms and dill.  The first recipe I’m adding that doesn’t use the Instant Pot! Boiling isn’t recommended in there.  But, we’ll save time by using pre-made dumpling wrappers.

These boiled Vushka (вуха) are meant to look like pigs’ ears.  They are served inside a bowl of borscht and make the Christmas Eve dinner of Sviata Vecheria special.

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Vegetarian / Vegan Instant Pot Borscht

Як ви готуєте борщ? (yak veh ho-too-yet-eh borsch) I’ve been learning Ukrainian with Duolingo.  It’s been fun and sometimes frustrating.  If you’d like to try it out, you can use this link which would give me a free week of the “pro” version.  The other day, the lesson asked me Як ви готуєте борщ? How do you cook borscht?

Here it is.  This is a vegan borscht with a lot of flavour, and it’s pretty straightforward.  I save time by using pre-cooked beans and pre-cooked onions.  A quick steam for the beets makes them easier to peel.  And, dill and beet leaves (or swiss chard) adds a fresh flavour in the middle of winter.

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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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Instant Pot Mashed Beans – Kolocheni Fasoli for Sviata Vecheria

Beans are a fairly pedestrian thing. This recipe made for Sviata Vecheria, the Ukrainian twelve-dish meatless Christmas Eve meal. As such, it’s made with vegetable oil and is totally vegan. With a cup of Instant Onions, you’ll save even more time on your way to Christmas Eve.

Mashed beans may not look like much but they’re tasty and garlicky.  They’re kind of the Ukrainian version of refried beans.

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Instant Pot Cabbage Rolls / Holubtsi

The Ukrainian word for cabbage rolls have a lot of different spellings when it’s transliterated into English. Holubtsi, holubchi, holubchy, golubchi, golubtsi. Why the h and g? Regional differences, I suppose.

In my family, holubtsi are more often meatless than meaty. This applies especially to Sviata Vechera, the meatless 12-dish Christmas Eve dinner.  In this version, they are also gluten-free and could go vegan by swapping out the butter for vegetable oil.

While you could finish the rolls in the oven, this recipe in the Instant Pot helps you save some time by speeding up the fillings and the final cooking.

This recipe saves almost 2 hours of cooking time!

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