10.04.2009

Borscht: Getting better all the time

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"I've got to admit it's getting better
A little better all the time"

This was my second attempt at borscht. My mom makes the best I've ever had, so there hasn't been much motivation for me to make this at home. But, with the this whole peasant diet, borscht is a must, also, I feel as a Russky, I must master this soup.

I started with making a home-made beef stock with some short ribs, and the basics - onion, celery, carrots, bay leaves and salt and pepper.
You wait, you skim, you wait some more. Then I removed the meat, sifted the stock through a strainer, and added the bell peppers to the stock, while sauteing the onions, carrots, and a bit of garlic in a separate pan.
After you soften up your carrots and onions, you add those into the pot as well, let them cook a bit. Then in goes the star ingridient, the beets, which gives the soup an instant red color. You also add tomato sauce and paste, I'm not sure which is the best point for this, so I have to check with the mom. After a few minutes you add in potatoes, the cabbage, and shred the beef a bit, and add that back as well.

In the end you get a nice looking pot of veggies. This soup requires a lot of salt. I never seem to put enough and that's where I go wrong. But with so many sweetish veggies, don't be afraid of over salting.

Once all the veggies are cooked through and you remove from heat, you add dill and parsley. Russians like to add sour cream as well (to your bowl that is), which I occasionally do.

The soup was good, but still can be better, once I get the seasoning down. I made a huge pot, and it's always better the next day, so when I reheat, I'm going to salt the hell out of it. Enjoy with some dark rye bread, and a shot of vodka for that true Russian feel.

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