Cheap Russian Food in Moscow

Moscow has lots of kfc, mc’donalds, burger king, subway, dunkin donuts. But it’s more interesting to try typical popular russian food: blini, grechka, pelmeni, borsch, sirniki. Early i’ve told you about “Cheap cafes and restaurants in Moscow to try popular dishes of russian cuisine”. Now it’s time to check main fast food places in Moscow and Russia which serve famous traditional russian food. Check there will hardly exceed 500 rub. (15$), and funny, unique and authentic experience is guaranteed. The most popular and common place is “Крошка Картошка” (Kroshka Kartoshka, Baby or Little Potato). Its name is a funny joke, because they serve GIANT potatoes; baked in foil, cut, buttered and optionally  mixed with cheese or herbs or meat. Such a dish is very rich by itself, and permanently satisfies hunger. You can also add an unlimited quantity of fillers  – scoops pf bacon, sausages , mushrooms , herring and even caviar salads.

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Potato is the second most important product in Russia (after bread). It’s eaten often in all ways: in soup or salad, boiled, mashed, fried (specially with mushrooms). Therefore Kroshka Kartoshka is very popular and it’s the most successful and largest national fast food chain. I remember an interview in which its creators told their success story: each night all family members including children were cutting tonns of salads, while men were searching for biggest potatoes in the market,  when they opened first street fast food back in 1998.

In Kroshka Kartoshka you can order pelmeni (dumplings with meat) or vareniki (sweet dumplings with cottage cheese or cherries). Seasonal menu offers “Olivier Salad” (or so-called russian salad), red caviar topping and kholodets (meat-jelly). Although Kartoshka is served very hot, you can still accompany it with best anti cold medicine – heating borsch soup (or pea / noodles soup).

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Price is about 75 rubles for potatoes and 35 rubles for filler. Imagine there are 3 Kroshka Kartoshka around my house, all work 24hrs and sell beer (though alcohol is not sold in Moscow after 23:00).

Another big traditional russian food network is called “Теремок” (Teremok). They are rated № 117 out of 8 842 restaurants in Moscow by Tripadvisor (with 4,5 out of 5 rating and quality certificate 2013).

Teremok’s huge menu is based on more than 20 types of blini (pancakes with different stuffing) and buckwheat dishes (sweet porridge or as a side dish).

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Buckwheat (гречка, grechka) is eaten as porridge for breakfast (with milk, honey , jam) or as a side dish for lunch or dinner. For example, buckwheatwith sausage is #1 students food – easy and fast to cook (10 minutes) and cheapest possible.

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Блины (blini – pancakes) or сырники (sirniki – something like cheesecakes) are usually cooked in the morning, let’s call it traditional russian breakfast. We even have a holiday week of Maslenitsa (celebration of spring, when everyone eats and cooks pancakes). Pancakes sold in Teremok are sweet (with honey, jam or condensed milk – try this one, it’s cool) and hearty (with meat, fish caviar etc) .

There are even very strange one – stuffed with banana or sausage .

Sure, here you can also eat vinaigrette and olivier (russian) salad, pelmeni, borsch and even cold soup “okroshka”. But the most interesting thing is that here you can buy traditional Russian drinks: kvass (a drink made of bread), fruit drink (berries, cranberry) and birch juice (made ​​out of wood :), yes, extracted from birch tree) or even low-alcohol apple cider and mead (honey-based) .

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Prices start from 55rub. for pancakes, and ~150rub. for porridge. There’s even a lunch from 120 rubles.

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