Without herrings we can't imagine the Christmas Eve table. We can prepare them in the traditional way with onion, or with dried plums, or as a salad. Choose your favourite version: sweet, spicy or dry.

Serve them in an unconventional way in small glasses or tiny bowls with French pastry. This dish can be a decoration for the Christmas table, New Year's Eve dinner or a meeting with friends.

Today I would like to share with you my own set of salads. Everybody can find something for themselves. One of them is more spicy with pineapple, the second is with gherkins and the third is sweet with cranberries.

Ingredients (for two people)
6 bowls with French pastry
Salad 1
100g of herrings in oil
5 slices of tinned pineapple
half a chili pepper
2 tablespoons of minced chives
2 tablespoons of mayonnaise
2 tablespoons of pineapple juice


According to tradition, on the Christmas Eve table there should be lenten soup: red borscht with ravioli or kalduny, mushroom- or fish soup. Although fasting during the Christmas Eve supper has for some time been tradition only, I can't imagine serving baked pork knuckle or sour rye soup with white sausage on this day.

The master of fish soup is my daddy, who has always prepared Christmas carp along with cooking the soup. I usually prepare mushroom soup for Christmas Eve. For a few years I have cooked it by following my mother-in-law's recipe. Everybody harmoniously says that there isn't a better one. It is on our table only for Christmas, which makes it all the more special. On Christmas Eve we have the whole family over, so I should have a lot of soup. I cook it in my biggest pot and if the soup doesn't disappear on Christmas Eve, it definitely will on Boxing Day. We serve this soup with fettuccini, but it is so aromatic and filling that it is great to have a slice of bread with it too.

80-100 g of dried mushrooms (bolete or porcini mushrooms)
3 carrots
3 parsley roots
a piece of leek
2 bay leaves


The poppy-seed cake, which is also known as poppy-seed loaf, is a traditional Christmas Eve cake. It consists of yeasty or shortbread cake rolled in a poppy-seed mass. For me, preparing a traditional rolled poppy-seed cake was always inimitable artistry, which was honed to perfection by my aunt. The cooked and strained poppy seeds were milled and mixed with nuts, honey and raisins. My cousin, who every year used to prepare poppy-seed mass, always tried to trick my aunt by milling the poppy seeds twice rather than thrice. I don't remember if she was taken in, but I still remember the jokes at the table.

According to folklore, poppy seeds eaten on Christmas Eve were intended to ensure family happiness. In the Christian tradition the poppy seed is the symbol of good crops, fertility and gentle sleep.

In my household I haven't attempted to make rolled poppyseed cake. Because of the lack of time before Christmas I usually buy ready-made poppy-seed mass. It isn't perfect but it is quite good. I used it to prepare a simpler version of poppy-seed cake, which I would like to recommend.

1 tin of poppyseed mass
4 eggs


Today I have a proposal which is worth saving and using for Christmas. Alongside Herrings with onion and other tasty fish-cabbage dishes it will be a yummy decoration on the Christmas table. This salad with French mustard has a sweet-winy taste, the herrings are salty and the beetroots sweet and crunchy. Every sense will love this dish.

This salad has another advantage: you may prepare all the ingredients earlier. Baked beetroots may wait in the fridge and the herrings in mustard sauce are best the following day. It is important during the madness before Christmas preparations.

3 beetroots
200g of herrings
½ lemon
1 apple
2 dill pickles
1 spring onion
3 tablespoons of mayonnaise
1 teaspoon of French mustard
3 teaspoons of butter
1 tablespoon of olive oil
a fistful of minced parsley
2 teaspoons of honey


I wish that every young employee beginning their professional career could meet such a boss as the one I once had. I doesn't matter whether it is a job in a corporation or in a state or private company. The most important thing is to have a leader who can create a team, motivate them to work and at the same time engender a positive atmosphere. My first boss was just such a person.


She used to bring a cheesecake to Christmas meetings – fluffy, dainty and always fine. She shared the recipe for this cake with me. Its quality depends most of all on the kind of cheese you use. It shouldn't be too sour and runny or you will make a beautiful ... sad layer. Our team doesn't exist anymore; its members have spread all over the world, but I still have the recipe. If I don't make any mistakes or don't forget that the cake is in the oven ;-), it always turns out great.



1kg of white cottage cheese for cheesecake

250g of sugar

4 eggs

50g of vanilla sugar

1 vanilla blancmange (without sugar)

150g of butter

fistful of raisins

fistful of minced dried apricots

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