Instant Pot Creamy Beet Salad with dill and spring garlic

This is an easy salad and side dish for the spring and summer.  Like many Ukrainian recipes, it has cream and then you add a bit more cream.  It’s a rich salad with great garlic and beet flavours.

The Instant Pot speeds up the cooking time on your beets (or in my case, one giant beet).  And, you can take advantage of spring garlic if you can find this special springtime treat.

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Instant Pot Golden Borscht with duck

Several years ago now, I was intrigued by Olia Hercules’ recipe for Green Borscht that appeared in The Guardian. It was full of sorrel and beet greens but no beets.  But, the protein was duck.

I decided to make a duck-based borscht like Olia’s but with what I had on hand. If you have sorrel and beet greens, her recipe looks amazing.  This recipe uses yellow/golden beets and red chard and gets topped with some crispy duck skin.
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Gluten-free Instant Pot Traditional Kutia

Kutia, a sweet mixture of cooked wheat, poppy seeds, and honey, is the most important dish of the Ukrainian Christmas Eve meal.  Part of the tradition is for everyone to eat some.  But, what if you have friends or family members who are celiac or avoiding gluten?

Here’s a kutia recipe that uses oat groats instead of wheat kernels. And, you’ll be done in 60 minutes!

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Instant Pot Sviachene – Ukrainian Easter Menu

Ukrainian food at Easter is just a polar opposite of the Sviatia vecheria – Christmas Eve menu.  Christmas Eve is about meatless and largely dairy-free dishes.  Easter is the opposite:  a lot of pork plus dairy.

They’re Christian holidays but have roots in pagan traditions.  Easter is a celebration of spring and family.

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Instant Pot Ukrainian Farm Cheese – Dry Curd Cottage Cheese

It’s easy to make your own dry curd cottage cheese.  This recipe makes a cottage cheese with small curd – perfect for nalysnyky (Ukrainian cheese crepes) or Easter cheese babka.  My homemade Instant Pot dry curd cottage cheese is destined for perishke (or pyrizhky, basically a bread-based baked perohe or pyrogy)

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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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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. Twelve dishes!

For any cook, 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. Plus, your vegetarian friends and family members rejoice.

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 CabbageInstant Pot beets and mushrooms served in a bowlPidpenky 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 Nachynka – Cornmeal Casserole

For one of my favourite foods, I grew up thinking that “nachynka” (also nachinka or начинка) was the word for cornmeal.  It actually means stuffing.  Also known as Bukovynska nachynka if it has bacon in it.  But, this is a basic but delicious cornmeal side dish at heart.

Nachynka starts out as a basic polenta recipe to which you add eggs and onions and bake it in the oven.  I made this an embarrassing number of times trying to get this one right for the Instant Pot – and it’s worth it.  Instead of stirring the cornmeal on the stove for 45 minutes, the Instant Pot makes that a quick 9 minutes!

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Instant Pot Buckwheat and Pork Cabbage Rolls / Holubtsi

I don’t often make cabbage rolls (or holubtsi or golubchi or whatever) with meat.  Ground meat is hard to roll.  Even if you have a small amount of rice, it just doesn’t hold together like 100% rice cabbage rolls like my traditional-Instant Pot cabbage roll recipe or even the beet leaf holubtsi recipe.

Enter buckwheat or kasha! Buckwheat filling in cabbage rolls is also great – and healthy.  But, on its own it’s not spectacular though it’s a great alternative for dairy-free and gluten-free vegetarians.  Here, I’ve combined some ground pork along with buckwheat to make a unique filling for your Instant Pot.  You could also use ground beef or a vegan ground meat product.

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