1. Does history repeat itself?

Develop a timeline of Doukhobor history.
Indicate corresponding factors that might have resulted in their repeated exile in Russia and in Canada.

2. “Toil and Peaceful Life” (Trud I Mirnaya Zhizn) is the Doukhobor philosophy of life.

Design a poster that best depicts their philosophy.

3. Crash-course in Russian!

Consult the Russian alphabetic list at the bottom of page.
Write your name.

4. Imagine for one wild moment of history that you are William McCreary, Commissioner of Immigration in Winnipeg, and it is your task to nourish 8,000 Doukhobors, who have just settled in Saskatchewan. The year is 1900. It is fall. They are vegetarians.

Develop a menu of staple foods in keeping with the times and with a modest budget. How would you store the food? How could the menu change with the seasons?

5. Religious utopian socialism is a phrase that has been used to describe Doukhobor society.

Compare the socio-religious structure of other groups, such as the Hutterites and the Amish, with the Doukhobors. How are they alike? How are they different?

6. It is generally easier to remember the sensational. The Sons of Freedom were an offshoot of the historical Doukhobor faith, known for outbursts of arson and nude marches.

List four ways that stereotyping of Doukhobors (equating them with the Sons of Freedom) can be prevented?


Do all of questions 1 – 6. Mix up a few Doukhobor recipes (see recipes given for borsch, perahi and saladukha) and hold a Doukhobor Festival! Put up your timeline of Doukhobor history, your posters, invite guests to write their names in Russian. Display pioneer menus. Have three students give 5-minute talks on religious utopian socialism: Doukhobors, Hutterites and Amish. Finally, stage a debate, “be it resolved that the stereotyping of ethnocultural groups in Canadian society can be prevented.”


Russian Alphabet

Doukhobor Pilaf (Plouwe)

Wash three cups of rice, drain; heat ½ cup butter in skillet and toss rice into it, so that rice is coated with butter, heat but do not brown. Transfer rice to small roaster, cover with 6 cups boiling water. Add ½ tsp. salt, ½ cup sugar and 2 cups washed raisins. Cover with lid and bake for about 45 minutes at 350 degree oven. Serve hot with milk or butter.

Saladukha (Fruit Pudding)


2 cups dried pears
1 cup prunes
½ cup each, dried apples, apricots, raisins, cherries
½ cup sugar
1 ¼ cup flour mixed with ½ cup cold water
12 cups boiling water

Put washed pears, prunes, apples and apricots into the boiling water and boil until all is quite soft. Remove from stove, strain fruit and save juice. Mash fruit very fine and put it through a colander. It will be very thick. If you have trouble getting it through the colander add a little hot juice. Make a paste of the flour and water, and thoroughly blend with the hot juice saved. Mix the strained fruit pulp, raisins, and sugar with the paste and bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees, until the top gets glazed and the cherries are very soft.
Can be served hot or cold.

Borsch (Makes a Big Pot)

Health books call it “potassium broth” but the Doukhobors call it “borsch!”

12 cups water
5 medium potatoes
¾ cup (180 ml) butter
½ cup (125 ml) carrots, grated
1 small beet
1 cup (250 ml) onions chopped
1 cup (250 ml) potatoes diced
6 cups (1.5 liters) shredded cabbage
1 tbsp( 15 ml) salt
1 cup (250 ml) heavy cream
½ cup (125 ml) chopped carrots
4 cups (1 liter) canned tomatoes
¾ cup (180 ml) green onions chopped fine
¼ cup (60 ml) celery chopped
dillweed to taste

In frying-pan pour pureed tomatoes, added l tbsp. butter and ¼ cup onions; simmer until thickened. Place ¼ cup butter, ¾ cup onions, ½ cup grated carrots and ¼ cut chopped pepper in another frying pan and sauté until transparent. DO NOT BROWN.

In another pot sauté 2 cups of cabbage in ¼ cup butter. Also DO NOT BROWN. Boil the water, add salt, ½ cup chopped carrots, the potatoes, beet, celery and the tomatoes that you prepared; simmer until potatoes are soft. Remove the potatoes and mash them with 1 tbsp butter, ½ cup cream, some of the green onions and dill. Return the potatoes to the pot of veggies that are boiling, with the rest of the cabbage. Last, add remaining cream and top with dill, green onions and any green pepper that is left. After adding the cream do not boil just keep it hot. Some prefer to discard the beet, it can be cut up and kept in the borsch.