I’ve mentioned it before, but I love beetroots. I never used to, but as a child my only experience of beetroot was from a jar full of vinegar. Whenever I see fresh beetroot in my local farmshop or farmer’s market I buy it. And then it often sits in my fridge till the following weekend for me to do something with it (what could I do with a beetroot quickly on a weekday evening after a long day at work and the train journey home)?
So there was a bunch of beetroot in my fridge this morning, wasn’t there? Three large beetroot. They could have become a tart, or another jar of spiced beetroot relish. Or that salad with dill and shallots and oranges.
I don’t know if it really was borscht or not, I just made it up.
- A bunch of beetroot
- a large onion
- a couple of sticks of celery
- a knob of butter
- caraway seeds
- a chicken stock cube, or some chicken stock if you have some kicking about (use veg stock if you’re vegetarian, obviously!)
- a bay leaf
- Chop the onion and celery finely (ish) but don’t fret about it if it’s not all teeny wee chunkies
- Melt the butter in a heavy based pan and add the onion and celery; sweat them gently
- Peel the beetroot and grate it coarsely (if you don’t have a food processor then you might prefer to just cut it into wee chunks)
- Pop about 1 TBsp of caraway seeds into a pestle and mortar and smoosh them up a bit. They might have been even better if I’d quickly toasted them first
- When the onion and celery is looking slightly translucent add the caraway seeds and stir
- Then add the beetroot and stir again
- Add the bay leaf
- Cook it for a wee minute and then add the stock cube and hot water from the kettle. I added enough water to cover the beetroot plus an extra centimetre
- Bring to the boil and simmer for about 30-40 minutes
- Remove the bay leaf
- Use a handheld blender and zizz it all up (or pour it into a liquidiser and liquidise it that way)
- Ladle into bowls and add a swirl of cream, or a couple of basil leaves, or a swoosh of basil oil or some chopped dill sprinkled over it
Perfect lunch with a chunky slice of homemade bread (preferably sourdough).
And now I’ve made the borscht, I have a perfect quick supper for later this week. Perhaps with a poached egg on toast. Imagine that dark yellow yolk on a plate next to a bowl of dark beetroot soup. Lush.
- Falling for Borscht: Autumn Beet & Vegetable Soup (localizeyourfood.wordpress.com)
- Time for some beetroot soup! (loiselden.com)
- Bear Breaks Into Home In Russia, Eats Borscht Soup Before Residents Call Police (PHOTOS) (huffingtonpost.com)