More About Russia

Russia is located in North Asia, extending from Europe to the North Pacific Ocean. Its northern border is the Arctic Ocean and to the south it is bordered by Kazakhstan, Mongolia, and China.

Although Russia has the largest land mass of any country in the world, its geographic location creates many areas that are either too cold or too dry for agriculture, and too far from sea lanes for trade and transportation.

Russia is about 1.8 times the size of the United States.

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Estimated population as of July 2016

The largest city is Moscow, Russia’s capital, with a population of 12.2 million.

Because its land mass spans different climates, the average temperatures in Russia can range from 102 degrees F in the summer to -81 degrees F in the winter, depending on the region.

Percentage of people 15 and older who can read and write

Russian is the official language and is spoken by approximately 87% of the population.

Recipe: Borsch

Russian cuisine is both unique and delicious. Some Russian favorites include blini, stuffed crepes; pirozhki, pastries stuffed with delicious vegetables and meats; and shashlyk, vegetable and meat kebabs.

Ingredients:

4 qts water
14 oz. beef or vegetable stock
1 small head of cabbage, finely shredded
5 large potatoes, cubed (skins can be left on)
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into thin strips
1 medium beet, peeled and cut into thin strips
1 medium onion, peeled and sliced
1 bay leaf
2 T tomato paste
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 bunch of dill
½ C. sour cream

Directions:

  1. Boil the beet in the broth for 30 minutes.
  2. Add the potatoes, carrots, and bay leaf and cook another 10 minutes.
  3. Heat a skillet and add the onions and a pinch of salt to fry them. Do not add oil.
  4. When the onions turn translucent, add the tomato paste and stir. Fry for another 7 minutes.
  5. Remove the onion pan from the stove and add in the garlic, stirring to break everything up.
  6. Add the contents of the onion pan to the pan with the beets, broth and potatoes.
  7. Turn the heat to low and cook another 20-30 minutes or until potatoes are soft.