Borscht is one of those foods that my mom and grandmother made often when I was a kid and I absolutely did not like. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I grew to love the delicious combination of beets, dill and broth (that’s often how it goes with those childhood traditional dishes, don’t you think?) Now, of course, my own kids don’t really like borscht and I think they’re crazy! I know that, when they’re older, they’ll be nudging me to make borscht when they visit, so I cling to that hope when we argue at the table about them finishing the bowl.
My family’s traditional borscht (I’m Ukrainian and Romanian) is just beets, broth and dill. Many people make a borscht that’s more like a delicious hearty vegetable soup and that’s the kind I prefer to make at home (my mom can make me any kind she wants and I’ll slurp it up because it’s so darned good!) My friend perfected a recipe that she graciously shared, and my sister and I tweaked it a bit to add a few more items. The result – a delicious hearty vegetable borscht that warms your kitchen, tummy and soul.
If you don’t like a particular vegetable, or really like another, you can certainly play with the amounts called for in a borscht recipe. I don’t like shredding a head of cabbage so I cheat and add whatever coleslaw mix I happen to grab. This borscht has a yummy coleslaw mix that includes kale this time.
- 3 potatoes, diced
- 3 beets, diced
- 1 Tbsp vinegar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup finely diced carrots
- 1 cup cut green beans
- 1 cup green peas
- 2 cups shredded cabbage (I cheat and use a coleslaw mix)
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp chopped parsley
- 3 Tbsp chopped dill
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 can diced tomatoes (28oz)
- 2 cartons vegetable broth (900ml each)
- 4 cups water, as needed
- Combine the potatoes and beets in a large soup stock pot, and add just enough water to cover, then add salt and vinegar, and set to boil.
- Next, add the carrots, beans, peas, cabbage, celery, garlic, parsley, dill, onion and tomatoes.
- Add enough water to again cover all the vegetables in the pot.
- Add 2 cartons vegetable broth and bring all to a boil, then set on low to simmer for 45m to 1 hour.
- Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with sour cream.
If you like measurements, rather than 3 potatoes, for example:
2 cups diced potatoes
2 cups diced beats
(But truly, when making soup it's really a little of this a little of that so you don't need to be too precise!)