“I thought again of my few memories from before Keramzin, of the dish of sliced beets, my fingers stained red with them.”
Here’s my Siege and Storm inspired borscht recipe. See my book review here.
A few notes about ingredients. You will grate the beets and carrots. It needs to be a coarse grate, though, or you’re going to end up with a stringy soup, which just isn’t appetizing. If you don’t have a way to grate the vegetables, I would julienne them.
Also, fresh dill is a must for this recipe. And you’ll want plenty of it! I use a packed half cup in my recipe. You can feel free to add more if you’re a big dill fan. (Or less, if that’s how you roll).
This recipe does have several elements, so it’s best to chop, grate, measure, and prepare everything before you start.
Savor the earthy flavors while reminiscing childhood memories of Keramzin.
Yield: serves 6
Prep time: 20 minutes; Cook time: 60 minutes; Total time: 1 hour 20 minutes
2 pounds of boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
2 tablespoons flavorless oil (canola, vegetable, etc)
10 cups water
3 large red potatoes (or any type that you prefer), cubed
1/2 head cabbage, chopped
2 pounds beets, peeled and coarsely grated
1 pound carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
28 ounce jar spaghetti sauce (I always make my own, but your favorite jarred variety will work fine)
1/2 packed cup fresh dill, chopped
Salt for seasoning
Sour cream, for serving
- Heat 1 T of oil over medium heat in a large frying pan. Add the cubed chicken and sauté for about ten minutes until the chicken cooked through.
- While the chicken is cooking, combine chopped potatoes and chopped cabbage to 10 cups of water in a large stock pot. Stir in a heaping 1/2 T of salt before setting on high heat. Bring to a boil.
- Once the chicken is cooked through, add the grated beets and carrots to the frying pan. Season with 1 t of salt. Cover with lid and cook for an additional ten minutes, stirring occasionally. The lid should plenty of moisture, but if the vegetables and chicken are looking dry, add 1/2 to 1 T more oil.
- Once the vegetables are limp, stir the spaghetti sauce into the chicken and veggies mixture. Cook, covered with lid, for an additional 5 minutes and then 5 more minutes without the lid.
- Carefully ladle the now thick vegetable and chicken mixture into the boiling pot of potatoes and cabbage. Add 1/2 cup chopped dill. Reduce heat and allow the soup to simmer, covered, for a good 30 minutes.
- Enjoy hot with a dollop of sour cream.