I’m not sure when beets went from “eh, okay if they’re on my plate” to “mmm, let’s grab some beets for dinner.” Beets are abundant here in Central Texas and as much as I love roasted beets and beets on my salad, sometimes you just want to mix it up a little more. I had some friends over for some Borscht. Cold Beet Soup. Cold borscht? I have no idea what to call it, but I enjoyed it. I tested this recipe out on friends and I got mostly, yumms, but a few “I’m just not sure how I feel about cold soup”. I know how I feel about it, and I know I’d make this again. Over and over again. I ate it for lunch several days in a row and it just got better and better. And if you’re wondering, no you can’t speed up the process no matter how hard you try. Let it cool.
Cold Beet Soup with Green Apple and Yogurt Topping
4 Large beets, peeled and cut into chunks
1 small onion, chopped
2 stalks celery
1/8 c sugar (or less)
splash of red wine/red wine vinegar (I had old red wine in the fridge so used a smidge)
pinch of salt and pepper to taste
Green Apple Topping
1 Green Apple, peeled and grated
1 cucumber, peeled and finely diced
juice of 1 lime
few sprigs of dill, chopped
Bring a large pot of water to a boil (about 8-10 cups- or enough to cover all beets). Add beets and boil until beets are tender, about 10-15 minutes. Drain beets and RESERVE the water. Saute the onion and celery until translucent and just tender. Saute over low heat and mix here and there so nothing browns.
Add the beets to the onions and continue to cook over low heat. Add 4 cups of the reserved beet juice and 1 cup of water. Add 2 T of sugar and a splash of red wine vinegar. Cover the pot and cook down over low for a few minutes. When all is very tender, blend all ingredients. I use my handy dandy hand-held immersion blender. Chill soup in the fridge for at least 8 hours. I was impatient, and stuck it in the freezer with a bunch of ice cubes. Don’t do that.
To make the topping, combine chopped cucumber, apple, juice, and dill. Let sit in the fridge until soup is ready. Taste the soup for sugar, salt, pepper, and red wine vinegar. When ready to serve, ladle soup into a bowl, top with a dollop of yogurt, and then the apple topping. Serve very chilled.