Russian meals are usually highly dependent on various meats and fish, with sides of potato or pasta starches being extremely common. Typical Russian preparations include bliny, a thinly styled pancake, pickled herring or salmon, and both sweet and savory pies, called piroghi when large and pirozhki when small.
Russian breakfasts are usually the smallest meal of the day, being eaten between seven and eight, and often consisting of porridge fashioned from various grains, eggs, cottage cheese (tvorog) or a small sandwich called butterbrots. Lunch, alternatively, is the largest meal of the day, with multiple courses including soup, meat, vegetables and a starch. The third lunch course usually includes cakes or sweets, tea or coffee, or a non-alcoholic fruit drink named kompot.
Dinner usually occurs in late evening, when the entire family is home and able to share the meal together. Dinner is slightly smaller than lunch, often comprised of a few appetizers, meat or fish, and potatoes. The entire family also enjoys a fermented beverage called Kvass, which is made from rye bread and is only slightly alcoholic. Russian culture places enormous importance on bread, with rye or "black" bread being the most popular and beloved. It is not unusual for a Russian family of four to eat an equal number of loaves per day.