Wednesday 18 July 2012

Borscht revisited

I made borscht years ago.  I liked it.  I wasn't in the mood to love it.  Recently I tried again, inspired by Lorraine's idea of blending most of the vegetables but keeping some aside until after blending.  I also liked Kari's idea of adding a can of beans to her barley soup.  I am pleased to say that I enjoyed it far more than my previous attempt.

I made this borscht for dinner after a bad day when I needed something that wouldn't tax me too much.  It was easy to make and had plenty of leftovers.  Lorraine insists that you serve it with sour cream.  I had yoghurt in the fridge so I used this the first night.  It added lots of interesting texture and flavour to the soup.  As did the chunk of sourdough bread on the side.  Even so, E found it a tad too much vegetable.  Maybe the extra richness of sour cream would convince him.

I had some fun photographing my dinner.  I thought I would try putting the corner of a ziplock bag to pipe yoghurt over the soup.  My swirls still were a little rough.  I have a long way to go yet but at least my pictures are better than in my last post on borscht.

I am sending this borscht to Deb of Kahaki Kitchen for her Souper Sundays event.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
One year ago: Weekend eats: flapjacks and two soups
Two years ago: Nutella Blondies
Three years ago: Sour Skon
Four years ago: Tagged: Top Ten Photos
Five years ago: Isa's Pizza - from disaster to delicious

Borscht with Beans
Adapted from Not Quite Nigella
Serves about 6-8
  • 1 onion, chopped roughly
  • 3 carrots, chopped roughly
  • 3 beetroots, trimmed, peeled and chopped roughly
  • 1 parsnip, chopped roughly
  • 1 turnip (swede), chopped roughly
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp lavender salt
  • 1 cup passata (tomato puree)
  • 1/4 cabbage, sliced thinly
  • 3 small potatoes, diced
  • 400g tin of cannelini beans, rinsed and drained 
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt (or more)
  • Dill (optional)
Put onion, carrots, beetroot, parsnip, turnip, garlic water and salts into a large stockpot and bring to the boil.  Simmer gently for about 1 hour.  Add the passata and blend.  Now add cabbage, potatoes and beans.  Simmer for about 30 minutes.  Check seasoning.  Serve with yoghurt and dill.

On the stereo:
Made in Scotland Film Themes (freebie cd from The Scotsman newspaper)


  1. I'm so glad that you liked it! I know what E means and I really think that the sour cream changes the soup considerably and for the better but yogurt would do something similar (although less creamy of course) :D

    1. Thanks Lorraine - lovely soup I think sour cream would probably do the job better than yoghurt but we tend to have yoghurt in the fridge far more than sour cream - I have always disliked cream and so sour cream just seems too creamy whereas I quite like yoghurt

  2. oh gosh, that looks super yummy! i love the swirl! very artistic:) and what a color! mmm

    1. thanks gf happy tummy - isn't my swirl artistic - ha ha! At least it stands out on the brilliant red colour!

  3. Gorgeous swirls Johanna! And I'm glad the bean idea came in useful - this does look like a lovely dish and has reminded me I am yet to try borscht. It would be perfect for winter so I may have to get myself organised soon.

    1. Thanks Kari - I am sure you would enjoy borscht - a good hearty winter soup - esp when adding beans

  4. Teehee! I love how this post is pretty much "I didn't like borscht, so I fundamentally changed it so it wasn't really borscht, and now I like borscht". GOLD!

    1. Thanks Hannah - not so much that I don't like borscht but that I wasn't feeling very receptive to good food last time I made it - however I think you are right that it might not be recognisable as borscht - though I did look up wikipedia and found it could have a whole lots of different things so I don't think there is a definitive recipe.

  5. It sounds great and I'm sure a bit of cashew cream would work well for me as a sour cream substitute. Borscht is something that I've wanted to try for a while but have been put off by the versions that are served cold as it doesn't really appeal to me. Love your swirl, I've never been confident enough to give that a try.

    1. Thanks Mel - am sure cashew cream would do the trick - the idea of cold borscht is not at all appealing and I have wondered if there is really a warm enough summer in eastern europe to warrant a cold soup.

      If you ever want to try the swirl try just a little hold in a plastic bag - much better than some of my other dodgy attempts

  6. I think your swirl is excellent. ;-) Beans are a great addition to Borscht. Thanks for sharing with Souper Sundays this week.

  7. Looks delicious. And very pretty with the swirls!

  8. My dad used to eat borscht all the time when we were kids--I could never even stand to taste it! These days, I love it. This sounds like a great recipe--must bookmark for our winter!


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