Chernigiv-style gartanachka with millet, potatoes and bacon

  • Cook Time
    55 mins
  • Serving
  • Difficulty

Gartanachka is a Ukrainian dish, originally from the Chernihiv region. This dish got its unusual name because it was cooked by the whole family, and “gurt” means “gathering” in Ukrainian.

What ingredients to use when making gartanachka

Gartanachka can be served as both a side dish and a soup. The dish is prepared from meat or bacon, millet, potatoes, eggs, scallions and parsley.Millet is soaked in boiling water overnight or for at least for half an hour to remove possible bitterness in the groats. Then the water is poured into a separate bowl and is later used to help adjust the consistency of the already prepared dish once it is ladled onto the plate. You can use any type of potatoes for this dish, but it is best to use low-starch potatoes so that they boil well and quickly. You’ll also need pork, but streaky bacon can be used instead.

According to most authentic recipes, gartanachka is usually cooked over an open fire, which gives the dish its characteristic smoky flavour. But the dish can be adapted to modern realities and cooked at home on the stove. We did just that – we added a dried pear to get the signature aroma.

How to cook Gartanachka


Chernigiv-style gartanachka with millet, potatoes and bacon: Directions

Step 1

Put 250 g of millet in a bowl and pour 500 ml of boiling water to remove any bitterness. Leave it to soak for 25 minutes.

Step 2

Boil the potatoes along with the dried pears. Take 5 potatoes of the same size, peel them and place into a large pan without cutting them into pieces. Add 3 dried pears to potatoes. Add about 1.5 liters of water, bring to a boil and cook uncovered over medium heat for about 25 minutes.

Step 3

Dice the streaky bacon. Peel an onion and cut it into medium-sized cubes.

Step 4

Place the diced bacon in a hot dry frying pan and tender it for about 10 minutes or until you get cracklings. Add the chopped onion and sauté it, stirring occasionally, in the rendered bacon fat for about 3 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.

Step 5

After about 25 minutes, drain the millet water into a separate jar. Add the soaked millet into the saucepan with potatoes without draining the water. Cook everything together for about 20 more minutes, until the millet is cooked through. Potatoes should be tender by then.

Step 6

One the millet has cooked though, reduce the heat to a minimum and remove the pears. If the potatoes are still a little undercooked, mash them with a potato masher.

Step 7

Crack 5 eggs into the pan with the millet and potatoes, one at a time. Whisk thoroughly after adding each egg. Rinse the green scallion stalks and chop them finely. Also wash 10 sprigs of parsley, tear off the leaves and chop them finely.

Step 8

Add the chopped onions and parsley to the millet, potato and egg mixture. Stir and serve immediately. If you want a thinner consistency, stir in the remaining millet water after you have ladled the gartanachka into individual places. Also, if desired, add sour cream and a little bit of lemon juice.

Cooking is easy!

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