Beet Soup Recipe—or Borscht (Hot & Cold)

A traditional and health beet soup recipe brought to America by Eastern European immigrants. Since borscht keeps well in the refrigerator for a week or more, and is both served as a soup and sipped as a juice-like beverage, it is often prepared in large enough quantities for multiple meals. The quantities listed below are for at least two meals for a family of four.
3 medium-size beets, with leafy stalks attached
10 cups filtered water
4 tablespoons organic apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon honey or agave nectar
1 tablespoon brown (raw) sugar
salt to taste
–To be added at the table:
For cold borscht—about 1 tablespoon organic sour cream or plain (unflavored) yogurt (regular, low- or non-fat) per soup bowl.
For hot or warm borscht—1 medium size boiled potato, cut into quarters, peeled or with skin on.

• Wash, peel, cut and prepare beets as instructed above.
• Place in deep pot, making sure the filtered water covers them.
• Cover the pot and cook on high heat until it begins to roil, then turn heat down to medium.
• From time to time, stick large fork into the thickest part of the beets and stalks to check if they are soft enough to purée.
• When ready, remove pot from heat and strain liquid into a big glass or porcelain bowl, leaving the beets and stalks in the colander.
• Run the latter through a food processor or blender until completely puréed and add to the liquid, mixing it well to integrate.
• In a separate glass container, mix the apple cider vinegar, sugar, honey (or agave nectar) and salt, while slowly drizzling about a cup of the hot beet liquid into the mix to dissolve the sugar and honey faster.
• Add this mixture to the beet liquid, mix until the ingredients are completely dissolved and adjust the tart-sweet balance to pleasing taste. Borscht is now ready to serve.
• At the table, add sour cream or yogurt—about one tablespoon per bowl, more or less—to COLD borscht, for a richer flavor.
• When hot borscht is served, place a medium size (warm) boiled potato, cut into quarters (peeled or with skin on) into each person’s bowl and ladle the steaming liquid over it.
• Some people insist on having both potato and sour cream (or yogurt) in both hot and cold borscht. It’s best to indulge us… er… them.

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