Yes, I’m aware my kids are complete freaks when it comes to eating, happily consuming pretty much anything I make. But even I was surprised at how much they loved this soup, chockfull of beets, cabbage, and caraway seeds. I think Princess Thundercloud may have only eaten it because it was pink (-ish). I do love the color and flavors of this soup, but hadn’t made it in years, thinking the hooligans wouldn’t enjoy it. Was I wrong!
Traditional borscht contains beef broth, and usually some sort of beef shank or other cut of meat, but when I made this I had only vegetable broth on hand. We actually liked it better than the beef version…it tastes lighter and fresher, while remaining just as filling.
Being a beet lover, I was happy to find vacuum-packed, already cooked beets in the produce section of Costco, and have been slipping them into many dishes. Although their vibrant color makes them a little hard to surprise people with (I’m looking at you, GI Joe). You can also use fresh beets (but I hate having my sink look as though I’ve butchered something in there) or canned…no difference in the results.
Vegetarian (-ish) Borscht
- 2 medium onions, chopped finely
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups shredded carrots
- 4 medium yellow potatoes, peeled and chopped finely
- 1 can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp caraway seeds
- 1 bag shredded cabbage (or coleslaw mix)
- 4 medium beets, peeled and chopped finely (or 2 cans of beets, drained and chopped, or 4 cooked beets, chopped finely)
- 2 tsp dill
- 1 cup sour cream, for garnish
1. In a large stockpot, saute onions in olive oil until softened, without browning. Add carrots and sauté another 5 minutes. Add potatoes, tomatoes, broth, garlic, caraway seeds, and cabbage to the pot. If you’re using fresh, raw beets, add them at this point, as well. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered for 1-1/2 hours, until vegetables are very tender. If using canned or already cooked beets, add them after an hour of cooking.
2. Stir in dill and let simmer a few minutes. Ladle into bowls and top with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkling of dill.
And here’s the menu for the week:
- Monday: Vegetarian Borscht and Cauliflower Garlic Bread
- Tuesday: Peanut Chicken over Brown Rice and Quinoa (Seeds of Change brand) with Steamed Broccoli
- Wednesday: Rachel Ray’s Super Sloppy Joes, Alessi Waffle Fries, and Fruit Salad
- Thursday: Lemon Pepper Shrimp with Red Peppers, Spinach, and Linguine
- Friday: Carnitas with Black Bean Salad
For the Peanut Chicken, I just pour store-bought peanut sauce over chicken breasts in the crockpot and cook them 3-4 hours on high or 4-6 on low. Shred and serve over the rice and quinoa. If you’d like to make your own, I’ve often made this recipe from Crockpot 365. It’s for pork, but chicken works just as well.