Beet Root Soup

Every autumn harvest heralds the time to make some variation on borscht with the fresh vegetables that come in from the garden.  As the name implies, the soup showcases the humble and oft-forgotten beet and this is the 2017 version.

Making the soup with Chioggia beets and red cabbage and onions yields a beautiful pink soup.  A bright and sunny variation would result from using yellow onions and beets along with green cabbage.  Experiment with what’s available at the local farmer’s market!

What you need:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or 2 tablespoons refined coconut oil (if you use virgin coconut oil, the soup will have a bit of a tropical flavor that doesn’t quite work…)
  • 3 red onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 3 ribs celery, sliced, 1 cup
  • a pinch each anise seed and caraway seed (optional but recommended, and don’t add more than a pinch)
  • 3 cup chopped fresh paste tomatoes (Roma, Amish Paste, Principe Borghese, etc.)
  • 6 cups chopped beets
  • 2 cups chopped carrots
  • 4 cups shredded red or green cabbage
  • 4 cups unsalted vegetable broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt (if using unsalted broth, to taste otherwise)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped dill
  • 1/3 cup fresh chopped parsley

What you do:

  1. In a thick-bottomed soup pot or dutch oven, heat the oil over a medium flame and add the onions, garlic and celery. Sauté until soft and just beginning to colour.
  2. Add the anise and caraway seeds if using and then the tomatoes, and cook until somewhat reduced.
  3. Add the cabbage, beets and carrots followed by the broth and water.  DSCN0267
  4. Bring to a boil.  Lower the heat, cover and simmer between 10-25 minutes, until the vegetables are as tender as you like them.  Add the salt.
  5. Just before serving, add the fresh dill, parsley and lemon juice.  Stir to combine.

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