Every patron I’ve mentioned Sara Swanson’s borscht to wants the recipe. Here it is, from Sara herself.
Beet Borsht (Hungarian Style)
1&1/2 pounds of soup meat with bone (I usually use pork neck) 10 – 12 cups of water
Cook for a few hours, cool, pick off meat from bones, skim off fat. Toss fat and bones or set aside to make stock with*. Put meat back in.
add 1 teaspoon salt (or more) 1 medium onion chopped 2 medium beets cut into thin strips
cook 10 – 15 min or until beets are almost done
add 1 medium carrot cut into thin strips 1 medium potato diced 1/2 cup thinly sliced celery
cook 10 min
add 3 – 4 cups shredded cabbage
cook just until tender
add a 1 large chopped tomato or 3/4 cup tomato juice or sauce 1 clove of garlic crushed 1/4 – 2 cups of beet kvass (to taste – this is where the sourness comes in) optional – if you have made your own beet kvass you can add the beets you fermented too so they don’t go to waste. salt and pepper to taste.
Tastes better the second day Serve with sour cream or yogurt.
* I usually take the veggie peelings (except beets – personal preference) & onion skins and add them to the bones and fat in another pan and just cover with water and simmer while the borsht is cooking to make soup stock for later.
You can buy beet kvass or make it yourself:
Chop up 1 or 2 large beets (peel first if they aren’t organic), put in a quart jar, cover with water, add 1 & 1/2 teaspoons salt, stir, put on lid or cover, let sit on counter for a few days, taste it every couple of days. When it is purple, (slightly bubbly if you have a lid), and sour than it’s ready to go. Store in fridge. I make mine 1/2 beet, 1/2 radish usually. There are lots of good instructional articles and videos and for making beet kvass on the internet.