Chef Peter Webster – Bouquet Garni
I have refrained from calling this soup “Borscht” in deference to all the purists who may be reading this article. The reasons are I have added no meat and I pureed it at the end instead of having a chunky soup.
What inspired this soup recipe were the fresh beets I picked up at the market. I have used the fresh beet greens as a side dish – sautéed the diced greens with oil and garlic. When the greens were wilted, they were ready. For the soup, I diced up the greens and added them to the soup. The colour of this soup is beautiful.
INGREDIENTS: (serves 10)
• 1 large onion, diced
• 3 carrots, peeled and diced
• 2 potatoes, washed and diced (skin on or off – your choice)
• 3 fresh beets, greens removed, washed, peeled and diced
• 3 stalks of celery, diced
• 1 small cabbage, halved, cored and thinly sliced
• 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped,
Beet greens, washed and rough chopped
• 3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme
• 8 cups of beef stock ( chicken stock works well too)
• 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
• Salt and pepper to taste
In a large soup pot, heat about 4 tbsp of oil. Add the onion, carrots, potatoes and beets. Sauté these vegetables, stirring often for about 6-8 minutes. Add in the celery, cabbage, garlic, beet greens and thyme. Stir for another 5 minutes until the cabbage is wilted. Add in the stock, vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes.
Puree the soup in a blender in batches. Return to heat and bring to a simmer once more. Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning to your taste.
Beet soup can be served hot or cold and is usually served with a dollop of sour cream.