Borscht (Russian: борщ) is actually a traditional Ukrainian dish. Similar dishes exist in cuisines of other countries of Eastern and Central Europe like Poland, Lithuania, Romania or Moldova. Borscht became very popular in Russia centuries ago. Now this rich stew is associated with Russia and is also known as the Russian red (or beet) soup. Other spellings include: borsch, borsh, borsht, borcsh, borstch, etc.

Ingredients (serves 4-6)
2 litre (= 8 cups) meat stock or water
200 g (=7 oz) beef
2 bay leaves
1 onion
200 g (=7 oz) cabbage
150 g (=5 oz) potato
200 g (=7 oz) beets
100 g (=3.5 oz) carrot
1 tbsp tomato puree (or 2 tomatoes)
100 g (=3.5 oz) lard, bacon or butter
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp vinegar (3%)
100 g (=1/2 cup) sour cream
parsley and/or chives
salt, pepper

Borscht - step by step

Meat stock (can be cooked in advance)
Place meat in a pan and add cold water to cover the meat. Bring to boil, removing scam as it gathers. Pour the water away and clean off any scam. Place meat in the pan, fill it with boiling water and bring everything to slow boil. Add one whole onion and bay leaves and let it simmer in the covered pan on low heat for about 2 hours.


Serve borscht with chopped fresh parsley or chives, sour cream (1-2 tbsp per portion) and a piece of brown bread.

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