If Ossetian pies could’ve ever written their autoPIEography, they would’ve probably started many centuries ago when they were baked by Alans, inhabitants of a Persian-origin kingdom of Alania once located in what is now southern Russia. They are believed to be descendants of Scythian and Sarmatian nomads famous for their equestrian and archery skills. It was a flourishing kingdom enjoying a strategic position along the Silk Road trade routes. To no surprise, it was an enviable and attractive slice of prosperity to foreign invaders like Huns and Mongols, who eventually wiped it off the map. Some Alans dispersed around Europe, amalgamating with other nations and reaching the most remote corners of it. Those who stayed however were forced to retreat to the high mountains (now called the Caucasus, home to the highest peaks in Europe, breath-taking views and dramatic landscape) to become highlanders and ancestors to modern time Ossetians.
Having enjoyed a thousand years of history, Ossetian pies are still prepared by the same recipes carefully preserved and passed from generation to generation: two thin layers of pastry and an abundant filling made from a variety of organic products such as cheese, potatoes, cabbage, minced beef, pumpkin, beetroot tops, sour cherry, apple and others. They are equally perfect as a fast and nutritious breakfast with your morning tea or coffee, as a hot and filling lunch with a light salad or as a family dinner accompanied by grilled meat or chicken.
We are extremely proud to introduce the Ossetian pie to the British Isles, where people can appreciate the great simplicity of it! And here is a little PIEble for the true believers:
An authentic Ossetian pie –
- is mainly of a round shape of 12’-14’ in diameter
- weights from 1 to 1.3 kilos (2-3 lbs)
- can serve up to 6 people
- has more filling than pastry
- always made from freshly risen dough
- consumed as it is or as part of a meal
- eaten by hand (well, up to you really, unless you are in Ossetia 🙂)