Borsch is a staple in most Eastern European cuisines and for good reason – it’s hearty, delicious, filling and best of all, it’s supposed to be accompanied by vodka. Other sides are black bread, green onions or garlic and salo.
We enlisted my dad, Vladimir, who makes the best borsch I’ve ever tasted, to explain how it’s done:
Makes 8 servings.
- About 1-1 1/2 pounds of beef (pork or chicken work as well), diced into appx. 2-in. squares
- 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups potatoes,thinly sliced
- 1 1/2 cups onions, diced
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 large carrot, sliced
- 1 cup beets, thinly sliced
- 1 cup tomato puree
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 3 cups cabbage, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh dill, chopped
- sour cream, for topping
- Make broth: Fill 5 quart pot about 2/3 full of water, add meat. Cook for about 30 minutes.
- In the meantime, add one tablespoon of vegetable oil to a large skillet, add potatoes and onion and fry over medium heat until the onion develops a light golden color.
- Add about 1/2 cup of broth, salt, carrot and beets and cook over a low flame, covered, about 10 minutes.
- Add tomato puree, sugar, vinegar and cook, covered, around 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add cabbage and cook, covered, around 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until all vegetables are tender.
- Put all vegetables from the skillet into the pot with broth, cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer about 10 minutes.
- Sprinkle dill into the pot, cover the pot and turn off stove and leave for 30 minutes. Serve topped with sour cream.
A couple of photos from behind the scenes: