I first learned this recipe from Alan Hooker who ran the Ranch House restaurant in Ojai, CA. Alan liked to serve this chilled with hot boiled potato slices added in the middle, creating a hot and cold experience to go with the sour and salt and dill flavors. I have tried it both ways and personally enjoy just the hot soup with some greek yogurt to replace the traditional sour cream. Any which way you make and serve it, borscht is delicious, filling and adds warmth to any winter meal you may serve. It can also be a meal in itself.
Purists would suggest that borscht isn’t real without a splash of cider vinegar. I find the tomatoes are enough. But feel free to add a couple of tablespoons of the stuff if you wish.
Vegetarian borscht with beets
- Chopped Onion – 1/2 cup
- Diced garlic – 1 clove
- Carrots chopped – 1/2 cup
- Diced Celery – 1/2 cup
- Red Cabbage shredded – 1/2 cup
- Sliced Beets – 2 cups
- Sliced Potato – 1 cup
- Chopped Tomato – 1 cup
- Chopped Italian Parsley – 1/2 cup
- Celery Seeds – 1/2 tsp
- Fresh Dill – 1/4 cup
- Bay Leaf (optional) – 1 or 2
- Fresh Ground Pepper – to taste
- Kosher Salt – to taste
- Vegetable Oil – 2 tbs
- Butter – 2 tbs
- Fresh Cream / whole milk / half and half – 1/2 cup
- Heat the oil and butter in a large stock pot and add the onions and celery and sauté till they are clear and add the garlic, celery seeds and bay leaf.
- Add the rest of the vegetables and toss lightly till they are warm and add with hot water to cover the vegetables. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes covered.
- Stir in the cream, milk or half and half and heat gently without bringing it to a boil.
- Add the dill and parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with your favorite bread and a dollop of sour cream or greek yogurt.
- Purists would suggest that borscht isn’t real without a splash of cider vinegar. I find the tomatoes are enough. But feel free to add a couple of tablespoons of the stuff if you wish.