I am constantly amazed at how animated and talkative people get when you mention food. The mere aroma of certain foods can evoke memories that transport us back to a special place and time. Food can bridge the gap between all ages, races and ethnicities.
Let's face it, the only thing that should ever come between people is a table and some serving bowls.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Grandma's Borscht

Visiting my mother this week she started talking about Borscht. When she was growing up it was one of her favorites. Her little Russian grandmother (she was 4’6”tall, absolutely adorable) use to make it. My mother’s maternal grandparents escaped from Russia in a row boat during the war. When they got to this country they taught themselves English and worked long and hard hours to feed their family. It has been hard over the years trying to duplicate some of grandma’s recipes; she wasn’t big on writing things down she would just tell you what to put in. We are still trying to make a carrot cookie that she made that was very thin and very crisp, still with no success. Hopefully we will figure it out someday. But luckily we have had great success with her version of Borscht, it really is delicious hot or cold.

Grandma's Borscht

2 quarts beef stock
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup cabbage, finely chopped
1 cup potatoes, diced
1/2 cup carrots, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups crushed tomatoes
put the beet juice from the can into the borscht
1 cup canned beets, diced
1 teaspoon vinegar
sour cream

In a large heavy pan, melt butter and lightly sauté cabbage, potatoes, carrots, celery and onion for approximately 5 minutes. Add beef stock. Add crushed tomatoes and beet juice to stock. Cover and simmer over low heat until vegetables are tender but not mushy. At this point, add the chopped beets and vinegar. Season well with salt and pepper and remove from heat before the beets begin to lose their color.
Serve with a dollop of sour cream


JennDZ said...

Oh wow, I love Borscht! That looks amazingly good. I haven't had it in forever!

Chef John said...

Looks great,Ive been planning a borscht demo! One of my Grandmothers specialties. Thanks for the memories.

Karin said...

We like Bortsj too and I always make a lot in August-September when the beetroots are cheap and fresh. (Keeps well in the freezer).

Those carrot cookies you mention sound really interesting. Except for carrots, what other ingredients? Rolled oats? Butter? Flour? Sugar?

Arties32 said...

Your borscht reminds me of my own grandmother and her parents Russian tradition. I will make this for my mom and dad the next time they visit so we can enjoy it together!