Buckwheat Kasha With Mushrooms – Гречневая Каша с Грибами
Kasha is a backbone of Russian cuisine. Although kasha is porridge made from all kinds of grains, one of the most common kashas is grechnevaya kasha – buckwheat kasha. In fact, Russia is the #1 producer of buckwheat. There is an old Russian proverb that states “Каша – матушка наша, а хлебец ржаной – отец наш родной” – (Kasha is our mother, bread is our father).
Kasha is very filling and nutritious. During the long, harsh Russian winters, kasha was served in many different ways. This recipe is a very classic preparation. Russians ate a lot of salt pork and mushrooms to make up for the lack of fresh meat. Many dishes incorporated these two ingredients. Savory, flavorful and so delicious, this kasha will satisfy our modern tastebuds just as it did our ancestors.
Yields: 6-8 servings
1 oz dry mushrooms
3-4 strips of bacon, sliced into small portions (lardons)
1 onion, finely diced
2 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups buckwheat
2 3/4 cups boiling water
Buckwheat is sold in raw or roasted form. If available, I always buy the roasted variety. If you can’t find it, it’s very easy to roast it yourself. On a dry skillet over medium heat, roast the buckwheat until it’s a golden brown color, like this.
Re-hydrate the mushrooms in hot water. Place them in a bowl and cover them with water. As they stand in the water, the mushrooms will re-hydrate and become softer and a lot of residue and dirt will sink to the bottom of the bowl. Let it stand while you are prepping the rest of the ingredients.
Drain the mushrooms and rinse in water to make sure no grit remains. Chop the mushrooms.
In a medium pot, cook bacon over medium heat until golden brown and crispy. Transfer with a slotted spoon to drain on a paper towel.
Pour out all the bacon grease, except 1 Tablespoon and cook the onion, seasoning with salt, in the same pot, over medium heat 5-8 min, covered, until soft and beginning to brown.
Add the butter, mushrooms and buckwheat. Roast for 2-4 min, until the buckwheat is aromatic.
This will give the buckwheat a much more intense and delicious roasted flavor. It also coats each grain in butter ensuring that the end result is porous, feathery and fluffy, not one big mass of lumpy porridge.
Pour in the boiling water, bring to a boil, season with salt, reduce the heat to low and cook for about 30 min, until the buckwheat has cooked through. You can add the bacon to the kasha when adding the water or stir it in when the kasha is cooked. Add a slab of butter to the warm kasha when serving. Another Russian proverb states that you can’t spoil kasha with too much butter – “Маслом кашу не испортишь.”:).Print
Buckwheat Kasha With Mushrooms
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Total Time: 45 mins
- Yield: 6-8 1x
- Category: Sides
- Cuisine: Russian
- 1 oz dry mushrooms
- 3–4 strips of bacon, sliced into small portions (lardons)
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1 1/2 cups buckwheat
- 2 3/4 cups boiling water
- On a dry skillet over medium heat, roast the buckwheat until it’s a golden brown color.
- Re-hydrate the mushrooms by placing in a bowl and covering with hot water.Let it stand for about ten minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a medium pot, cook bacon over medium heat until golden brown and crispy. Transfer with a slotted spoon to drain on a paper towel.
- Pour out all the bacon grease, except 1 Tablespoon and cook the onion, seasoning with salt, in the same pot, over medium heat 5-8 min, covered, until soft and beginning to brown.
- Drain, rinse and chop the mushrooms.
- Add the butter, mushrooms and buckwheat. Roast for 2-4 min, until the buckwheat is aromatic.
- Pour in the boiling water, bring to a boil, season with salt, reduce the heat to low and cook for about 30 min, until the buckwheat has cooked through.
- Add the bacon to the kasha when adding the water or stir it in when the kasha is cooked.
- Add a slab of butter to the warm kasha when serving.
Natasha of Natashaskitchen.com
Dry mushrooms and bacon; brilliant! I’m always on the lookout for a good buckwheat recipe. Thank you!
I was amazed at how much depth and intense flavor they give the buckwheat. It’s no wonder onions, mushrooms and bacon are aromatics – they infuse the whole dish with aroma:)
Olga, I noticed you use dry mushrooms in your recipes quite a bit. Is their any substitute for some of them. I live in a small town, and dry mushrooms aren’t always available.
You can use regular mushrooms, or leave them out altogether.
However, you can order them online, like I do:).
Reading your recipes always satisfies my soul. Although some things I don’t quite agree with, as they don’t always collaborate with what the Bible says. And some things I am still learning about… Have you seen documentaries such as “Forks over knives,” “Fat, sick, and nearly dead” I love being informed on every level! You are beautiful and I’m happy to see that you and your husband seem so in sync. Thanks for your hard work
I really liked this recipe. I used fresh mushrooms and turkey bacon with avocado oil 🙂 still very tasty. Thank for great ideas. Seems like i can’t stop eating eat 😉
I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Helen:).
I can’t wait to try this with a few little changes. Being vegan, I’m either going to use some smoked paprika or some liquid smoke and I’m going to use more onions and fresh mushrooms. I can taste it now. Yummmmy
Thanks so much for such a great idea!
Mushrooms and onions with buckwheat are a really great taste combination:). I sometimes don’t add any bacon at all, and it tastes just as wonderful. Enjoy, Jackie.
I made this and my husband who doesn’t like grechka said he will request i make this again sometime, thank you for a delicious easy recipe Olga 🙂
Wow, that’s quite the compliment:). Thanks for writing to let me know.
Love this recipe, Natasha! This is one of my favorite (-bacon). I usually bring good ripe buckwheat kernels with me when go visit my mom in Ukraine. )))) Cannot get use to green buckwheat, no matter how I prepare it.
I’m happy to hear that you enjoy this recipe, Iryna:). I love the Russian buckwheat as well – it’s so good!
(BTW, my name is Olga, not Natasha.)
I live in the us can you please recommend a good brand of buckwheat
I always buy buckwheat from a Russian or Polish store, so I’m not sure what brand to recommend.
A very good brand of kasha in the United States is Wolff’s. It comes in boxes, in fine, medium, or coarse grind.
I usually buy the medium grind, follow the directions on the box, using the egg as they suggest. It’s always delicious.
I don’t use any meat in it, but I often use chicken broth instead of the water.
Thank you Olga for the delicious recipe! Everybody at home loved it. I will be making it again soon.
I did not put bacon and used fresh mushrooms, it was very flavorful and tasty.
I’m happy to hear that you enjoyed it, Milena.
Hi Olga! This recipe looks delicious. Can you please share what mushrooms you order online? Is it a mix or porcini or something else? Thank you 🙂
I like dry porcini mushrooms. But you can use whichever ones you like.
Let’s Talk Food: Savory Ukrainian Recipes | Wide Awake Family
[…] Grechka. If you’re planning to visit Ukraine anytime soon (you’re probably not, but…😂) then you’re going to have to learn to like buckwheat (“grechka”). I’ve noticed that it’s an acquired taste for most Westerners, but I can testify that you really can learn to like it. When we first moved here I was not a fan, but over the years grechka has become a comfort food of sorts. Our kids eat it at school for lunch at least twice a week and all of our boys love it. Enjoy this basic recipe for grechka with mushrooms. The recipe calls for dried mushrooms, but I usually use fresh, as that’s what I have on hand. PS: Despite having “wheat” in its name, buckwheat is actually a gluten-free food. Grechka Recipe […]