The inspiration

At a young age I learned that raw cookie dough was amazing.

I am not Claudia.

Claudia is my Mother and the true inspiration behind this website. My name is Jaime and I am trying to prove that I am a good daughter and worthy of being passed on the family tradition of being extraordinary in the kitchen.

You see, our family is Ukrainian. Very Ukrainian. By very, I mean a typical family meal does not fall short of 4 courses, with the main ingredients being butter, cream, onions, garlic, and more butter.

Claudia is an amazing cook. From a very early age, I was told that I would need to learn her traditional family recipes in order for her to grow old gracefully. While I, on the other hand, slave in a hot kitchen cooking for my own screaming family.

I am now a full-fledged adult and barely know how to recreate one single amazing recipe of my mother’s. That’s where this website comes in. Over the next while, I will be cooking with Claudia and sharing her recipes as she teaches me her legacy through this blog. I will also share my own favourite recipes that I have created or found in my travels.

I figured there was no better way to learn Claudia’s recipes than to blog and share them with the rest of the world.

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. 

40 Comments on The inspiration

  1. Jenn
    June 23, 2010 at 10:47 PM (5 years ago)

    What a fabulous idea! All your pictures make me wish I was Ukrainian! Maybe I can pick up some good ideas for our dinner time :)

  2. Claudia's Cookbook
    June 23, 2010 at 11:05 PM (5 years ago)

    Thanks Jenn! You have always been a token Ukrainian to me :)

  3. Michelle Manary
    June 24, 2010 at 9:07 AM (5 years ago)

    This is so smart Jaime. I wished now that my Grandma has passed that I had taken the time to learn her recipes that were “traditions” at holidays and other special occassions. Maybe I can learn through you instead.

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      June 24, 2010 at 9:33 AM (5 years ago)

      Thanks Michelle! I figured this was a good way of getting all the recipes of my Mom’s out of her head and documented :) The learning process so far has been pretty fun.

  4. Alison Zulyniak
    July 5, 2010 at 7:13 PM (5 years ago)

    You go girl!! My background is Polish and Ukrainian, my husband has some Hungarian. Looking forward to reading more!

    ~Prairie Story …care of Alison Zulyniak

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      July 5, 2010 at 8:39 PM (5 years ago)

      Us Ukrainian gals gotta stick together! Thank you so much for reading! Again, I look forward to reading your blog as well!

  5. Barb
    July 6, 2010 at 8:44 AM (5 years ago)

    Can’t wait to come along for the ride!

  6. Tavia Corkum
    August 10, 2010 at 10:27 PM (5 years ago)

    What a fabulous idea!! How many recipe’s go missing with the loss of a loved one?! And that you are taking the time to learn them and SHARE them, is AWESOME!

  7. Claudia's Cookbook
    August 10, 2010 at 10:29 PM (5 years ago)

    Thanks so much Tavia! Yes, I figured I needed to get these “family secrets” down on paper somehow! Why not do it in a modern and fun way! Thanks again for reading and I hope you enjoy! :)

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      October 18, 2010 at 5:00 PM (5 years ago)

      Thanks for the invite Alison! I will definitely play along shortly! :)

  8. Chris
    January 8, 2011 at 1:37 AM (5 years ago)

    Hi Jaime, I was looking for some ideas for my first Ukrainian Christmas party that I’ve invited a few friends to and came across your Nalysnyky recipe. Love it…

    Oddly enough i was reading the comments left by others and clicked on Prairie Story’s link (as i’m from the prairies) only to see that the Alison was someone i know! (Hi Alison!)….

    Wonderful site! I look forward to see what you have to share…

    Chris W

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      January 8, 2011 at 12:10 PM (5 years ago)

      Hi Chris, I’m so glad the blog helped you with your party! Manitoba is such a small place – that’s so great you know Alison too! I love the food community we have going.
      Thanks for sharing you comments. Hope you had a great Ukrainian Christmas!

      • Luba Sytnyk
        September 5, 2015 at 1:28 PM (3 months ago)

        Hi Jamie
        I came across your blog as I was looking for Ukrainian recipes. Thank you for posting it.
        I am from Ukraine and my husband’s family is from Manitoba. My son was born in Canada. While i was thinking that he does not feel that he is Ukrainian, yesterday he came home looking for sourcraut and shaving pieces of beef into it, placed it in the pita bread and called it “traditional” Sandwich. I just realized that he was imitating the sourcraut dishes he had at his Baba’s house. thank you for having this post

        • Claudia's Cookbook
          September 6, 2015 at 2:37 PM (3 months ago)

          Thank you so much for the wonderful comment, Luba! I’m so happy our blog has given him some insight into his Ukrainian roots :)

  9. Rick Robinson
    September 13, 2011 at 1:00 PM (4 years ago)

    Claudia..are you the one I met in front of Pete’s Coffee today? We spoke about my wife’s Pilates Studio Pilates Vita. If so please contact me. I gave you my franchise business card 480-577-3378

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      September 13, 2011 at 2:08 PM (4 years ago)

      Sorry Rick, I think you have the wrong Claudia! Best of luck in your business!

  10. Shawna
    January 2, 2012 at 10:39 PM (4 years ago)

    Hi, I love your site. I am not Ukrainian myself, but my husbandis. Normally we have our freezer stocked full of the staples (perogies, nalysnyky, pyrzhyky, and cabbage rolls) Unfortunately, this year, we ran out before Christmas so I have spent the entire weekend making all my dishes for Ukrainian Christmas. This is my first time so I have relied on your site for the pictures! Thanks so much!

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      January 3, 2012 at 8:36 AM (4 years ago)

      Thank you very much for your comments Shawna! I’m glad you enjoy the site and the pictures are helpful! Merry Ukrainian Christmas and good luck with all the dishes! :) Let us know how they turn out and feel free to post pictures on our Facebook page!

  11. Angela @ The Chicken Scoop
    February 6, 2012 at 8:10 PM (4 years ago)

    I am really glad I found your blog! My Baba passed away last summer and she was the cook of the family. Luckily, I was able to learn a few of the recipes and have copies of the rest but she never went into all of the traditional recipes. She was Russian and all the foods are pretty much the same but with different names. I look forward to seeing your and Claudia’s creations!

  12. Kerena
    June 8, 2012 at 6:26 PM (3 years ago)

    I’m so glad I found your blog, my grandparents were from Ukraine I have some fond memories of things my grandmother would cook for us sadly they are no longer with us I was looking for the recipe for holopchi, I’m looking forward to making my own, thank you xx

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      June 8, 2012 at 9:01 PM (3 years ago)

      We are thankful you found us Kerena! I’m glad our recipes can bring back fond memories of your family to you. That is our goal of this blog. I hope you enjoy and thank you for the lovely comment!

  13. Angela Dzikowski
    February 11, 2013 at 2:29 AM (3 years ago)

    I had no idea that Aunt Claudia’s recipes were on your website. What a fabulous idea. Thank you so much for sharing!!!!

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      February 13, 2013 at 3:27 AM (3 years ago)

      Thank you so much! Glad you like the recipes Angela!!

  14. Paul Edwards
    August 21, 2013 at 5:46 AM (2 years ago)

    Congratulations on an impressive site. The stories and personal information give context to your recipes. Your great photographs bring your site to life but of course the star is your selection of wonderful recipes. I was fortunate to visit Russia & the Ukraine many years ago and remember the fantastic countryside. We went overland from Helsinki to Turkey. One aspect that I always remember was crossing the border from Russia into Ukraine and seeing the difference in the houses. Russia seemed so drab whilst all the houses in the Ukraine seemed brightly painted. Of course so much has changed. It was in the 70’s and I recall how friendly everyone was, particularly in the various restaurants and bars – language differences were never a barrier. I live in Australia and through your site it reinforces my belief that we are all a part of the same global family. Thanks!

    I am trying to build up a gallery of food related pictures of street food, food markets and food festivals, see my page at Do you have any photos that you could share from where you live or from your many travels? If you can help, you could email me or add them direct to my web site I will acknowledge your photos and provide the relevant link.

    I will understand if you are too busy, not interested or feel that you cannot help me.

    The goal of my site is to encourage people to try new cuisines so that they can get a better understanding of the world’s diverse cultures as well as helping people prepare and taste new food. My site has a comprehensive guide on food related topics, covers over 100 cuisines including Russia & Ukraine, a section on special diets, information about where to buy ingredients, cookbooks, recipe sites, places to eat and many other cuisine related topics.

    My site does not sell or generate income.

  15. SueSueper
    September 17, 2013 at 1:15 AM (2 years ago)

    I found your site yesterday after looking for a perogie recipe.

    Used your recipe to make perogies today. They were awesome!

    Made the Sauerkraut ones as well as the Cheese/Potato/Onion one.

    My fav was the Sauerkraut one, it was so tasty.

    I will certainly be looking around your site to find more recipes to try out.

    Thanks so much for sharing your mom’s recipes!

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      September 17, 2013 at 3:11 AM (2 years ago)

      Hi Sue! So happy to hear you enjoyed our perogie recipe! The sauerkraut is my fav too :) Thank you very much for sharing and visiting the blog!

  16. Maan
    October 15, 2013 at 8:46 AM (2 years ago)

    Hi Ms. Jaime,

    I’m glad I’ve stumbled on your blog and would like to compliment you on your creative vision and the success of your blog. It is refreshing and inspiring to see such individuality in these times, and the courage to express it. Your personal connection to your readers is delightful.

    By the way, I saw this competition where they are looking for people that can cook the national dish of their country. I think this might be of interest to you since you also love cooking like me. Aside from that, you can win an Ipad mini! =)

    Read more about it on their facebook page:

    Good luck! Be your country’s chef! =)



  17. Natalia Chomcyz
    June 29, 2014 at 4:03 PM (1 year ago)

    Hi Jaime! I’m adopted and found my biological parents about a month ago, and they told me that I am Ukrainian. So, I decided to go onto the internet and learn more about my culture and I stumbled upon this blog, and I’m glad that I did! All of these recipes look delicious and I can’t wait to make my first dish of Holopchi!

    Really looking forward to reading more. Much love from another Ukrainian-Canadian gal, Natalie

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      June 30, 2014 at 3:12 PM (1 year ago)

      Hi Natalia! Wow, thank you so much for sharing your story! What an exciting time for you. I am so happy you enjoy the blog and are able to connect a bit more with the Ukrainian culture through the food that I have shared. Please let me know how you like the recipes! Thank you again for sharing….it definitely put a smile on my face :) All the best!

  18. Amy
    July 17, 2014 at 3:20 PM (1 year ago)

    I am loving your website/blog…I am currently bookmarking almost every single recipe and am beyond excited to try them out! :)

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      July 17, 2014 at 3:23 PM (1 year ago)

      Hi Amy! That’s so great – I am so happy that you are enjoying the blog!! Thank you so much for commenting and let me know how you like the recipes when you try them :) Take care!

  19. Nicole
    September 21, 2014 at 1:56 PM (1 year ago)

    Hi Jaime,

    I came across your blog from Pineterest and I’m so grateful. I’m challenged in the kitchen and I love your blogs. Easy recipes, pictures (which are crucial for me) and detailed recipe for the “cooking challenged” like myself LOL!!! You are an inspiration and I truly love that you are learning family recipes. As for Claudia, just think many more people will now carry your family traditions. Your legacy will live on. :)

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      September 22, 2014 at 9:37 AM (1 year ago)

      Hi Nicole! Wow, thank you SO much for such a lovely comment. It really made my day. I am so happy the blog has been helpful to you! Before I started the blog, I also found that recipes that had photos were so much easier for me. I’m glad they are beneficial to you as well :) Thank you again for the comment – it means a lot!

  20. Irene
    January 9, 2015 at 1:21 PM (11 months ago)

    Found you website through a friends posting on Facebook. I am Ukrainian born in Toronto. My parents are both gone and I have from time to time made the dishes my mother made – perohy, holubtsi, nalysnyky, borscht, etc. Sometimes I forget more than I remember and don’t know where by Ukrainian cookbook disappeared so I was so happy to find your site. I’m sure I’ll find alot of wonderful things to make and remember again what a fabulous cook my mother was. Thanks again.

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      January 11, 2015 at 3:06 PM (11 months ago)

      Hi Irene! Thank you so much for sharing. I’m so happy that our blog is helping you reconnect with your Mother’s recipes!

  21. Janet
    February 5, 2015 at 3:37 AM (10 months ago)

    Hi Jamie, I am so glad to have found your website. My mom’s side of the family is Croatan and some of your traditional recipes are almost the same. I’ve never known anyone other than us to use cottage cheese, onions and butter like us. Mom said her mother used a farmer’s cheese which was drier. We made a cheese strudel with cottage cheese,onions and butter but rolled as a long strudel. She could never make enough. Thanks for the inspiration! I just may get mom’s recipes written down while I still remember for my daughter. Keep up the traditional ones they’re jogging my memory. In a good way. Janet

    • Claudia's Cookbook
      February 5, 2015 at 9:30 PM (10 months ago)

      Hi Janet! Thank you so much for sharing. I had no idea Croatian was similar to Ukrainian food! I mean, who wouldn’t love butter, onions and cottage cheese anyways :) I’m so happy our blog inspired you to reconnect with your own family recipes. It really means a lot to us! All the best!

  22. Pat
    October 27, 2015 at 10:22 AM (4 weeks ago)

    Hi Janet,
    Thank you for your site. When I was growing up our next door neighbours were Ukrainian. The mother was Peggy, and since she had all boys she would let me come over and be with her while she cooked. I did learn some from her, but of course being a kid I didn’t write anything down. I loved the food and smells that came from that kitchen. Also they did not have a lot of extra cash so food was not expensive, just plain ordinary food that she elevated to greatness. I see a few of the things she made here and I am going to try them. My family has always loved my cabbage rolls and it is Peggy that taught me how to make them. Also Christmas eve was the big dinner, and there had to be 13 different items on the table. My own Mom had Christmas day for the big meal always turkey, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, brussel sprouts and mashed rutabaga, green peas and steamed pudding with rum sauce, during the evening she served shortbread and christmas cake. Loved both dinners~


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