Author: Jonathan Rainey

Kulebyaka: The Refined Pirog

Кулебяка (kulebyaka) is one of Russian cooking’s refined delicacies. It’s also somewhat of a mystery to many, who know of it only from the works of great Russian authors such as Chekhov and Gogol. Chekhov, in “The Siren,” makes the dish sound sensual: «Кулебяка должна быть аппетитная, бесстыдная, во всей своей наготе, чтоб соблазн был.» […]

Kasha (Sochivo, Kutya): Russian Porridge

Early on those cold autumn and winter mornings, there is nothing quite like a steaming bowl of каша (kasha) to prepare for a long day ahead. In Russia, каша is porridge typically made by cooking гречка (buckwheat), овсянка (oatmeal), or рис (rice) with молоко (milk) or вода (water). Porridge is not the first thing that […]

Organ Concert at the Catholic Church in Vladivostok

On November 15, I had the opportunity to attend a pipe organ concert at the Mary Mother of God Catholic Mission in Vladivostok. I talked about the church itself, where I go on most weekends, in a previous entry. This past Sunday, I attended mass as usual, but I found out that soon after the […]

Exploring Russian Traditions in Vladivostok

The international department at VGUES has, throughout the semester, taken us on various excursions around Vladivostok. This week, we ventured back into time to explore some of the old Russian traditions. At a rather nondescript apartment building near the city center, a kind babushka beckoned for our group to come inside. We were then ushered […]

Tiger Day in Vladivostok: Student Observations

The fourth Sunday of every September in Vladivostok is set aside for a local holiday called “День Тигра” (“Tiger Day”). The event celebrates the Amur (also called Siberian) Tigers, whose natural habitat is the Primorsky Krai Region of the Russian Far East. Vladivostok’s coat of arms prominently features the Amur Tiger, and there are quite […]

Mary Mother of God Catholic Church in Vladivostok

For the past couple of weeks since I have been in Vladivostok, I have had the opportunity to attend mass at the Mary Mother of God Catholic Mission Church. It is located conveniently close to VSUES. I only have to walk about 15 minutes to get there. I am not actually Catholic, but since I […]