A Halloween weekend tradition that my husband and I started two years ago was to make a pot of borscht. We started it the first year we were married as a practice round for Christmas Eve to make sure that it turned out right. It turned out great (as did Christmas Eve that year) so we have kept up the tradition. I thought this would be a good time to share a recipe with you since it has been a while since I last blogged about one (which was this brownie post).
As I mentioned, our first run at this was a practice round for Christmas Eve. I have had this soup every Christmas Eve of my life since I can remember, it represents part of my heritage. My grandparents both grew up in Catholic families in Ukraine - and borscht is part of a traditional meatless meal of that day.
For this recipe you will need:
- 4 c grated beats
- 3/4 c shredded cabbage
- 1/2 c chopped celery
- 1 c green beans (cut in thirds)
- 1 c wax beans (I get them from my Baba and Dido's garden, but they can be hard to find in grocery stores, doubling the amount of green beans will also work)
- 1/2 c grated carrots
- 1 package dried Shiitake mushrooms (cut finely)
- 1 potato peeled and cubed
- 1 onion
- 1 c great northern beans
- 8 oz light sour cream
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 1/3 c fresh dill
- garlic powder
- chicken broth - optional
Start out by boiling the beats with their skin on. Once the skin comes off easily with a fork, they are done. Use a fork to peel off the skin. Shred or grate the beats. Set aside.
In a large pot add 10 cups of water. If desired, substitute chicken broth for more flavor (unless you are making a traditional meatless meal). Add grated beats, shredded cabbage, chopped celery, green beans, wax beans, mushrooms, grated carrots and a spoonful of salt. How much salt is a spoonful? Whatever works for you, this is how I got the recipe from my Baba. Bring to a boil
While the pot of ingredients is heating up finely chop the onion and saute 3/4 cup of onion in butter. Again, I do not have an exact amount from my Baba - but but at least half a stick. Once the onions have turned golden brown drain the butter and set aside (I like to keep mine in the fridge and use when heating up leftover varenyky.
Going back to the pot - once it has come to a boil, let it only go a few minutes before reducing the heat. Add 1/3 to 1/2 cup of vinegar to add flavor and help keep the bright pink color. Mix cream of mushroom soup with a bit of the soup you are making. Use it to help get the lumps out. Add cream of mushroom mixture to the pot.
Mix 8 oz of sour cream with a bit of soup juice, 1/3 cup of fresh dill, sauteed onions, garlic powder and pepper. Bring everything to a boil again. Add sour cream mixture to the boiling soup. After it has been boiling for about five minutes, reduce heat and let simmer for two hours.
So anyone up for trying this recipe? Let me know what you think. I am also available for any questions you my have.
Live in this moment and love life!