Internet Praises Ukrainian’s Cooking Mid-Blackout: ‘Resilience’

A Ukrainian man has gone viral on TikTok after showing his followers how he prepares dinner amidst the blackouts in his country, with some users praising his “resilience.”

In the video, TikTok user Gregory Donchik (gregorydonchik13) showed how he had to get creative to cook a pasta dish. The clip begins with a man dousing pieces of coal in an aluminum foil-covered pot with lighter fluid. He then prepared chicken, coating the meat with seasonings before sliding it into a frying pan, which was placed above the coals to cook.

After the chicken is finished, it cooks up a medley of vegetables in a frying pan and adds the meat. After boiling a pot of pasta and adding cream to the mixture, he’s left with what looks like a delicious and filling dinner.

Dutch oven filled with coal
This stock image shows a dutch oven filled with coal over a fire. A video of a Ukrainian man cooking dinner during a blackout has been viewed millions of times on TikTok.

Ukrainians have faced ongoing blackouts as a result of the country’s war with Russia after President Vladimir Putin launched an invasion in February.

In a Facebook post on Monday, Sergey Kovalenko, CEO of the Ukrainian energy provider YASNO, said the country could face several more months of power outages. The outages are a result of attacks on Ukraine’s power grid by Russian forces.

Since being shared on November 29, the viral TikTok post has attracted some 10.6 million views as well as more than 974,500 likes.

The overwhelming majority of those posting in the comments praised the man’s cooking—although some believed the pasta was a bit overcooked.

TikTok user Your Mr. Ice said: “Bro in Ukraine and still eat better than me.”

Amanda Patterson posted: “Bro’s in the middle of a war and people are still like ‘pasta’s overcooked,’ like brah at least they are alive.”

Khaled added: “If Ukraine eats like this, I’m moving there. That’s better than what I ate in my entire life.”

While Jamie commented: “Your resilience and bravery give me hope. your meal looks beautiful. keep finding light in the dark, friend”

Others cautioned Donchik of the health risks that come from cooking with coal while indoors.

“Please be careful. Coals produce carbon monoxide, a colorless odorless, and poisonous gas. Idk (I don’t know) if your outside but please do this outside if possible,” user Your Proud Dad wrote in the comments.

According to the World Health Organization, cooking with coal generates harmful household air pollution that can cause serious health risks, such as cancer. It is noted that each year 3.2 million people worldwide die prematurely from illnesses attributable to household air pollution caused while using certain fuels for cooking.

The WHO added: “6 percent are from lung cancer: approximately 11 percent of lung cancer deaths in adults are attributable to exposure to carcinogens from household air pollution caused by using kerosene or solid fuels such as wood, charcoal or coal for household energy needs.”

Newsweek reached out to gregorydonchik13 for comment.