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I found a very interesting old dish in Ukrainian cuisine. In this video a woman cooks it https://youtu.be/-eq9ggNSWjg

It is a variation of pasta soup, for which the most salient feature is that the pasta is quickly formed into irregular pieces by a rubbing motion between the two flat hands. It is then boiled in milk thinned with water, and the whole result (pasta and cooking liquid) is served together as a soup.

I am interested in where people cook this dish, what different cooking processes are used, and what related dishes are called. In Ukrainian cuisine this is called "Zatirka", "Styranka", or "Sukanytsia".

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    There is more information (in text rather than video form) in this Wikipedia article: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zatiruha You may wish to edit some quote from the article into your question so that people can more easily answer.
    – dbmag9
    Nov 24, 2022 at 12:13
  • I would guess that it probably has other names in areas adjacent to Ukraine, but does not seem to be popular anywhere else.
    – FuzzyChef
    Nov 26, 2022 at 6:13
  • America has "dumpling soup" in which soft dough I dropped into the soup to cook. This does tend to cause some of the dough to break up and thicken the soup. But it's usually made with chicken soup rather than plain milk and water.
    – The Photon
    Nov 27, 2022 at 23:20

2 Answers 2

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While it is really hard to prove a negative, I would say that no, this exact dish seems to only have arisen once, and is only common among East Slavic people - which is a better way to describe its origin area than by modern country borders.

Starch-based soups do exist around the world as a poor people food, although they are not as popular as various types of gruel (which is the cheaper preparation, since milling is an expensive process in low-energy societies). But on most continents, wheat is not the dominant cereal. So for example in Japan, people traditionally eat a gen-mai soup (rice based), and similar is true for other continents. So it should be sufficient to look at the most similar dishes in Europe and see if they are virtually the same.

European countries do have traditions which are highly similar to this soup, but they happen to have developed slightly different in their detail. None seems to combine all the central features of this specific dish.

  • Having a soup made from barely-shaped dough. This positions the zatyrka in the middle between a noodle soup, a flour soup and maybe a bread soup. In noodle soups, the noodles tend to be elaborately formed, for example in a ravioli soup. Also, when talking of "noodle soup", most people imagine a soup that is broth-based and has vegetables added. Standard flour soups don't have any shaped lumps at all, and are anyway rare outside of the same Eastern Slavic culinary region, except for a few exots like the Basel flour soup, which is more of a drinkable gravy. The closest geographically separated relative of the zatyrka in this sense is probably the trahana, which is made in ex-ottoman regions. There, sourdough is cooked into a soup, but without shaping, just dissolving it in water. The zatyrka process is halfway between these two ideas, and doesn't seem to be practiced in other regions.
  • making noodles by rubbing. Examples of this exist, e.g. Schnupfnudeln and Spätzle, but they are not the same process, don't produce the same shape, and aren't traditionally made into a soup.
  • making a soup with a milk base. This is quite common in dairy producing areas. The less similar examples are chowder-like, but you can find dishes like Kappeler Milchsuppe (Switzerland) spread throughout the European continent, which involve cooking up bread, grains or noodles in milk. There are also sweet variations.

I must admit that I am not very familiar with the cuisines of the countries around the Caspian sea, which would be a good candidate to have similar foods, maybe they have similar dishes which I have missed.

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  • I kind of struggle to follow your “make by rubbing” logic for Schupfnudeln and Spätzle, but may be culturally biased.
    – Stephie
    Nov 24, 2022 at 14:41
  • There are similarities with Spätzle or Hungarian Nokedli… just without the soup; though they're not 'rubbed' so much as 'squeezed'. I don't really know Schnupfnudeln except through Google, but though they're rubbed, they seem to be more akin to Gnocchi. There is a British dish, barely remembered from 'long ago' called pobs. It's not really a soup, nor is it noodles - it's bits of stale bread heated in milk until it all goes soggy & soup-like; sweet or savoury. [No, it's not my idea of gourmet either;)
    – Tetsujin
    Nov 24, 2022 at 17:28
  • @Stephie it is a more extended meaning of "by rubbing", as I didn't mean that they are rubbed between two hands. I still chose to include them because Schupfnudeln are rubbed by one hand against a board, and there is one variation of Spätzle (or is it Knöpfle?) which is made with a tool that rubs the mass over a holed piece of metal (not the levered press, the other kind that looks like a mandoline). It is certainly not the same process - I was pointing to the closest related product, with the intent to show that it is far enough to not count as "the same".
    – rumtscho
    Nov 24, 2022 at 17:49
  • Perhaps Riebele (also Swabian)? Which is a firm pasta dough, scratched over the pointy side of a box grater? That gives crumbles that get cooked in soup and exude more starch than other kinds?
    – Stephie
    Nov 24, 2022 at 18:51
  • @Stephie I'm not that deep into the terminology. I meant the ones you make with a Spätzlehobel (spaetzlewunder.de/media/image/2a/74/1d/spaetzlehobel.jpg). It does use a rubbing motion to produce them. I have only used it for a quite liquid dough though, more liquid than for hangeschabbt. The Riebele might be a closer match, but I didn't know about them.
    – rumtscho
    Nov 24, 2022 at 18:58
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Yes, this is a quite antique dish similar to "Halusky" https://uk.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%93%D0%B0%D0%BB%D1%83%D1%88%D0%BA%D0%B8 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halu%C5%A1ky

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    Welcome to the Cooking Stack Exchange, please take a tour and visit the help center for more information on this site and how we work. This looks like the beginnings of a good answer; if you fleshed it out with some more information on why you think it is similar to the question(it certainly looks like it from your links), it would make a very good answer.
    – bob1
    Sep 17, 2023 at 21:10

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