Breakfasts in Ukraine are simple and satisfying affairs: an omelette or a boiled egg, or maybe some fresh cheese curds with sour cream and sugar. This morning, just before my husband, Igor, heads off to work, we’ve made one of our son’s favorites: syrniki, thick little pancakes composed of cheese curds, eggs, flour, and a bit of salt. We fry the pancakes in butter and, as always, serve them with sour cream. Ivan is three, and, like most three-year-olds, he loves anything sweet, so we’re topping our _syrniki_with some thick Crimean honey, too. The sour cream, honey, and cheese curds came from organic vendors at the Besarabsky Rynok, Kiev’s huge hundred-year-old indoor market, where farmers come from the countryside each morning to sell their products. The market is an important part of life for people in Kiev. It stayed open every day during the protests this winter in Independence Square, just down the street from the market, which is about ten minutes by car from where we live. Going to the market and eating comfort food like _syrniki_together as a family have helped us, and lots of people in Kiev, get through these uncertain times. And no matter what is in store for Ukraine right now, we have a new baby on the way, which makes us feel good, and hungry for the future.
Khristina Sukhomlin is a home cook.