Blini with Caviar

Prep Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 40 mins
4 dozen

These traditional Russian pancakes are best with authentic garnishes: a dab of creme fraiche and a spoonful of caviar.


  • 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (one ¼-ounce envelope)

  • ½ cup warm water (110 degrees)

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • Coarse salt

  • ½ cup low-fat buttermilk

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan

  • ½ teaspoon sugar

  • 2 large eggs, separated

  • Garnish: Creme fraiche and salmon or trout roe


  1. Sprinkle yeast over water. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir together flour and 1/2 teaspoon plus a pinch of salt. Stir together buttermilk, butter, sugar, and egg yolks in a large bowl; whisk in yeast mixture, then flour mixture. Let stand, covered, in a warm place for 30 minutes.

  2. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; fold into batter. Let stand for 10 minutes.

  3. Heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat, and coat with a thin layer of butter. Add a scant tablespoon batter for each blin (about 6 or 7 per skillet), and cook, flipping after bubbles appear at edges and color turns golden, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a parchment-lined tray, andlet cool for 30 minutes. Garnish with creme fraiche and caviar.

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