I can't remember the first time I tried beets or borscht but I do know I'm now hooked. There is a Russian piroshky place near my office and I love to get a cup of borscht and a piroshky for a dreary day lunch. Besides being very delicious I also swoon over the perfect color of borscht. I've had a few helpings of other people's borscht recipes and this is currently my favorite.
1 lb. slice of bone-in beef shank; fat trimmed
1 onion; diced
8 cups beef broth
4 large beets; peeled & chopped
4 carrots; peeled & chopped
1 russet potato; peeled & chopped
2 cups thinly sliced cabbage
3/4 cup chopped fresh dill
3 tbs red wine vinegar
1/4 cup heavy cream
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
1 in a large pot brown the beef in a few tbs of oil. After a few minutes turn over the beef and add in the onions. Let them cook for about 5 minutes
2 Add in 4 cups of beef broth and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover, cook until meat is falling off the bone - about 1 1/2 hours.
3 Once meat is cooked remove it and chop it into bite size pieces. At this point you can store the beef and broth in the fridge for the next day or keep on cooking. When you remove the broth from the fridge or continue on you should now skim the fat from the top of the broth.
4 Once the meat is removed bring the broth back up to a boil. Add in the beets, carrots, potato and the rest of the broth. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, beets should be easily pierced with a fork.
5 Once the beets are cooked add in the cabbage, beef and dill. Simmer for 10-15 minutes
6 Remove the soup from the stove and stir in the red wine vinegar and salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and drizzle in heavy cream, top with dill.
For small group last week, since our oven was out of commission, I made tahini puppy chow with chocolate covered sunflower seeds. This then made up the majority of my dinner that night!