The name «shanga» appeared in Russian language from Komi language. The dish is very popular in the Russian fairy-tails, bylinas and folk epos. This culinary product is widespread from Karelia to Ob. Today shangi are a feature for regional cuisine of Prikamye. "The explanatory dictionary of living great Russian language" of V.I. Dahl lovingly calls a shanga as «shanezhka» and «shanechka» and describes it as "a small fermented loaf, rye, corn, wheat, poured by oil, sour cream; a cheese cake with porridge, with crushed potatoes or with cottage cheese, with sour cream on the top".
Traditionally shangi were baked in a furnace, however a modern housewife can successfully bake them in an oven.
If someone tells you that he knows the correct recipe of baking shangi, don't trust him. There is plenty of variants. Flour and fillings can be various, but shangi can not exist without two peculiarities. It is a form of a round roll or a cheese cake. And a filler on the top which is accepted to call enamel (poliva). And do not mix up shangi with cheese cake. The last one is a product from dough filled to the brim with a filling, and shangi is greased with something on the top.
Here is the one of recipes, taken from a recipe book of Alexandrova-Ignatyeva, the author of many recipe books (1914):
About 800 g of flour (flour should be sifted and dried); one and a half glass of milk; 200 g of melted butter; 100 g of sugar; 6 yolks; half of a teaspoon of salt.
Put sourdough from part of flour on warm milk, on yeast or on own wheat ferment. Drawn the butter, add yolks and sugar, grind all ingredients. Combine the mix with well-risen sourdough. Knead the dough. Firstly, it can stick a little to hands, and not to stick at the end. Dough should be risen twice, and be very careful when you press it down. Form shangi from the dough. Prepared products are covered with mix not too fat (20%) sour cream, butter and flour. Put it in an oven when shangi become golden, carefully wrap them in a towel for a half an hour.
Shangi are eaten hot and freshly baked with milk, with curdled milk, with shchi, with tea. So, they go with everything. According to some recipes, rich, yeast dough is made for shangi, to another — not rich, but sour. Shangi can be with a different type of filling: potatoes, cottage cheese, bird cherry, peas, grain and flour. But despite the filling and the type of flour, invariable and exciting smell, which can not be expressed in words, remains. It wins all hearts. And even a person, who sticks to diet strictly, will pinch off a matchless piece of a shanezhka is a dish with the ancient backgrounds and centures-old history.