Monday, December 06, 2010

Frugan: Borscht with Caramelized Shallot Sour Cream

I developed this delicious Borscht for Northeast Flavor's website as part of a simple Hanukkah dinner. I used quite a bit of oil in the recipe for full flavor, but feel free reduce it oil by 2 T if desired. It will still be delicious. I topped it with caramelized shallot sour cream ( I used tofutti ), but if you don't want to deal with the hassle of peeling all those shallots, use a red onion and the flavor will be pretty similar. Next time, I am going to replace the sour cream with white beans and roasted garlic. I think that would be a delicious topping.

4 T olive oil
1 t caraway seeds
1 T dried dill
4 t  smoked paprika
2 large onions, diced
10 cloves garlic, pressed
½ c carrots , diced ( 1 small )
2 T tomato paste
1.5 t salt
Pinch pepper
3 T apple cider vinegar
3 medium beets, peeled and diced. Wash and chop beet greens ; set aside.
4 c cabbage, shredded
Reserved beet greens
2 c  waxy potatoes, diced ( around 2 medium )
15 oz can canellini beans, drained or 1.5 cups cooked beans
6 c good quality vegetable broth ( lo w sodium )
2 T soy sauce
2 T apple cider vinegar
2 T fresh dill
Garnish with:
Caramelized Shallot Sour Cream  ( recipe follows)


  1. In a heavy bottomed 8 qt pot over medium heat, warm spices in the oil for 20 seconds. Ad onion, garlic, carrots  and tomato paste along with salt and pepper.
  2. Sauté for 10 minutes stirring well or until the vegetables are fragrant.
  3. De-glaze with apple cider vinegar
  4. Add beets, cabbage, beet greens, potatoes , beans and broth. Turn heat to medium-hi and cover.
  5. Cook for 35 minutes. While soup is cooking, caramelize shallots
  6. When soup is finished, stir in apple cider vinegar, soy sauce and fresh dill 

Caramelized Shallot Sour Cream
2 c shallots, coarsely chopped
2 T olive oil or cooking spray
Pinch salt/pepper
¼ t smoked paprika
½ t sugar
2 c sour cream
1 T fresh dill
Pinch sea salt

  1. Use a cast iron skillet over low heat
  2. Add shallots, oil, salt/pepper, paprika and sugar
  3. Cook for 30 minutes or until very brown.
  4. Stir often
  5. Let mixture cool
  6. Stir into sour cream along with dill. 

If you are really watching your wallet, fresh beets can be a little pricey. You can substitute canned beets if need be, although fresh beets are much better, plus you get the fabulous beet greens. 

Beet greens can be sauted like chard and are delicious with roasted garlic. Stir some into whole wheat or brown rice pasta along with some cultured seed cheese, olives, chickpeas, and tomatoes for a delicious meal. 


  1. thats so neat that you were published in that magazine!im assuming that that happens a lot though from your blase attitude, "oh i just got featured again, sighs..." lol (not meant meanly!) i would never thought soy sauce would be in this recipe, but as i was reading through the ing. list i was surprised by all the flavors.(my kinda soup:))

  2. I was looking for a good borscht recipe and this sounds perfect — caraway and smoked paprika must be great in there. Thanks for posting.

  3. I must confess . . . I have never had borscht. I love beets, but beets in soup just doesn't sound "right" to me! I'm sure I'm wrong, but I'm still having a hard time wrapping my tastebuds around that one!

  4. Mmm...I could so go for a warm bowl of borscht right now.

  5. I thought I don't like Borscht. But I think I just changed my opinion. That looks so delicious!

  6. A friend of mine passed your link to me via OD, and I'm so glad she did. Your blog is utterly brilliant, both the concept and the execution. I'm definitely adding you to my blogroll.

  7. (re your comment) thanks for telling me that! i could feel how happy you were through your comment. its hard sometimes deciding how far we can go. you need to make a living, and nobody is 100%vegan. veggies are grown in soil that farmers bought from factory farms you know? that aint vegan!lol and hate mail? that happened because you were/are so popular. people forget that you are a real person putting yourself out there. actually, think of hate mail as your bloggy doing very well:)...wheres my hate mail? lol ahh the perks of being almost anon.

  8. I've never made borscht, but you're doing a good job of making me consider trying! It always sounds so heinous in most recipes, but your variation sounds quite delicious- Very promising, indeed.

  9. that is incredible! I have never made or even tried borscht!

  10. I really must get better acquainted with fresh beets and all you can do with them! Yum!

  11. hi... is the sour cream real sour cream? i thought this was vegan recipe? did i misread? or is the sour cream a vegan replacement?