Thursday, August 18, 2011


I love Borscht.  I make both beet borscht and cabbage borscht but my favorite is beet.  I can never make a small pot of soup, I add and add until the pot is full.  But that's okay because I freeze it for later use. 

My recipe does not have amounts as it depends on how much you want to make and what you want to add.  Below is my guideline or suggestion and you can take it from there.

I usually start with a couple of soup bones for extra flavor but you can omit this step if you want it to be totally vegetarian.  I throw the bones into the pot and add water.  You do not want to fill the pot with water because the soup grows as you add to it.  I keep the soup at a slow boil as I keep adding ingredients.  I add the ingredients in the order below.

Chop an onion or two.  I'm doing it the lazy way with my food processor.

Chop several stalks of celery and a bunch of the celery leaves as well.  The celery is the only vegetable that I did not grow myself.

I don't worry about uniform sizes of the veggies.  Add the celery and onions to the pot.

My cabbage did not do well this year - the heads were quite small and loose.  I chopped two small heads to add to the borscht.

Next add tomatoes.  Since mine aren't ready yet, I added a jar of last year's.

I dry my own parsley each year.  Add a handful or a pinch.

For spices I use seasoning salt, pepper, paprika, basil and sometimes a tiny bit of cayenne pepper.

Clean and sort your beet greens keeping the nice crisp greens ones.  Toss the rest in the compost.

I chop the stems as well as the leaves.

It is easier to slice the leaves if you pile them up nicely.  It also keeps the pieces more manageable.

Some of the leaves were too big so I stacked them in a pile and sliced them in half before cutting them as above.

Chop a few carrots.  Again I am using my food processor to slice the carrots.

The push of a button and voila - sliced carrots.

 Wash and peel the beets before cutting them up.  I usually plant the Cylindra beets you see below because I find them easier to handle when pickling - they fit into the jars easier.  I find I can usually slice them right into the jar without having to use the cutting board as I do with the big round Detroit beets.

Slice up the beets into reasonable size pieces. 

I has both yellow and green beans ready so used both.  I also add peas if I have them but mine were awful this year so there were none for the borscht.

Cut the beans into bite-sized pieces.

Peel a few potatoes.

Cut up the potatoes and add to the soup.

Wash your dill carefully and use only the bright green leaves. 

Chop the dill and remove any large stems.  

I add this right at the end.  I taste the borscht several times while add ingredients to check the spices.  You can add more to taste as you go.

When the vegetables are cooked the borscht is ready.  Some people like it just as it is.

I prefer mine with a big dollop of sour cream.  We usually eat it with homemade bread, buns or biscuits.  It is a wonderful meal.  Enjoy!  ;)

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