Beet borscht is a traditional cold vegetarian soup common in Russian, Ukrainian, and Jewish cooking.

Yield 6 servings
Time 1½ hours
  • Knife
  • Saucepan with cover
  • Slotted spoon or strainer
  • 2 bowls
  • Grater
  • Wooden spoon
  • 4 large beets
  • 3 c vegetable stock or water
  • 1 t salt
  • 1-2 T lemon juice
  • 2-3 T sugar or honey
  • 1-2 t black pepper
  • 1-2 T fresh dill, minced
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded, and grated
  • 2-3 scallions, finely minced
  • 1½-2 c buttermilk, sour cream, or yogurt (optional)
  • 1-2 boiled potatoes, sliced (optional)
  • 2-3 hardboiled eggs, chopped (optional)
Directions Peel and trim the beets, then bring them to a boil with the stock/water and salt.

Partially cover and simmer 20-30 minutes, until beets are tender.

Transfer the beets to one bowl, allowing them to cool, and the cooking water to another.

Grate the beets and add to the water. Stir in lemon juice, sugar/honey, spices, cucumber, and scallions.

Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.

Stir in 1½ c of buttermilk, yogurt, or sour cream, taste, and adjust seasoning. Top with remaining buttermilk and/or potato slices and/or egg and serve.

Notes Adapted from Molly Katzen’s New Moosewood Cookbookread my review.

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