The first dish of the twelve traditional meals served
during a Ukrainian Christmas Eve Supper is always "Kutia". The following
recipe is from the "Ukrainian Daughter’s Cookbook" from the Ukrainian Women’s
Association of Canada, Daughters of Ukraine Branch, Regina, Saskatoon.
There are more complicated versions of "Kutia", but the basic recipe is
the same. It should be sweet. The wheat celebrates the staff of life and
the honey represents the spirit of Christ.
2 cups wheat
3 quarts water
1 cup poppy seed
2/3 cup of sugar
1/3 cup honey, dissolved in ¾ cup hot water
½ cup chopped walnuts, almonds, or pecans
1) Dry the wheat in an oven at 250 F for one hour, stirring
occasionally. Wash and soak in cold water overnight.
2) Next morning, bring wheat to the boiling point; simmer
for 3 to 4 hours, until the kernels burst open.
3) Scald the poppy seed and simmer 3 to 5 minutes. Drain
and grind with either a mortar and pestle or a food processor using the
finest setting. Set aside.
4) Combine honey and sugar in hot water. Set aside.
5) Before serving, add the sweetened mixture, poppy seed
and the nuts to cooled, boiled wheat.