Good morning! I made borscht yesterday. I found a recipe in the January/February 2008 edition of Cooking Light, and changed it up a bit to work in the crockpot, and I am happy with the results. Since I've never had any other borscht, I don't really have anything to compare it to, but it was mild and tasty. I'd think of it more as a starter than a full meal. Wikipedia says that sometimes people add meat. Adam would have liked that----he dug around a bit trying to find some. Cooking Light didn't tell me I could have added meat...
--8 beets, peeled and sliced (wear old clothes! beets stain!)
--1 yellow onion, chopped
--1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
--1 1/2 cups chopped celery
--1/2 cup chopped carrot
--1 cup chopped parsnip
--1 potato, peeled and chopped
--2 1/2 cups shredded red cabbage
--3 cloves garlic, minced
--1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
--2 T apple cider vinegar
--1/2 cup beer (Redbridge is gluten free)
--5 cups water
--2 tsp sugar
--1 tsp kosher salt
--1/4 tsp black pepper
--1 T dill
--sour cream (at least 2 T per family member)
Use a 6 quart or larger crockpot. Coarsely chop vegetables and add to crockpot. You're going to blend the soup, so don't worry too much about how the veggies look.
After everything is chopped and thrown in, add the spices, vinegar, beer, and water.
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 4-6. You want the vegetables fully smooshy so you can blend them easily.
Carefully (and wearing OLD clothes cuz of the beets-staining-thing) use an immersible blender to soupify. Ladle into bowls and top with a generous dollop of sour cream.
Borscht is good. It's got to be incredibly healthy due to all of the vegetables in there---Cooking Light says it serves 8 with 164 calories a bowl.
It is red. Very, very red. It looked like raspberry jam to me---and that's what I thought of when I while I was eating it (it doesn't taste like raspberry jam. It tastes like vegetable soup made with beets). The kids were asleep by the time the soup was done and didn't taste any. I don't know if I'm going to be able to talk them into it. They're still kind of crabby from getting over colds.
The guinea pigs were thrilled to eat all of the beet stems.