Wednesday: Beet and Cabbage Soup

Here’s my inspiration (as usual, found at Epicurious), as well as my personal editing (I’m taking out these parts of the published recipe, and adding in these parts), based on what I actually have on hand:

Beet and Cabbage Soup

Bon Appétit  | May 2003

by Ana Garcia, Cuernavaca, Mexico

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 3 cups coarsely chopped peeled raw beets (from 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 2 cups chopped red onions
  • 3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup chopped red cabbage
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped seeded jalapeño chiles 1 cube frozen pureed jalapeno chiles, seeds included.
  • 5 cups (or more) low-salt chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Tortilla chips
  • Sour cream

Preparation:

Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add beets, onions, celery, cabbage, and chiles; sauté until celery is soft, about 10 minutes. Add 5 cups broth and lime juice; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 1 hour 15 minutes.

Optional steps: meanwhile, make the dinner you’re actually going to eat tonight, because you didn’t allow enough time for dinner prep.  Once vegetables are tender, cool the soup overnight.  The following night, resume recipe.

Working in small batches, puree soup in blender until smooth. Return soup to pot; season to taste with salt and pepper.  Heat the soup to serving temperature if you chose the optional steps.  Thin with more broth by 1/4 cupfuls, if desired. Ladle soup into bowls and top with tortilla chips and sour cream.

The Verdict:

I enjoyed this soup.  Travis pointed out that it was approximately the same idea as borscht, which I’ve never had.  However, we all know that I love Mexican cuisine, so this is like the Latin version of the Russian classic.  It had a bit of spice, but the sour cream chilled that out.  Trav fried whole tortillas in vegetable oil for the garnish, and then broke them into pieces.  He and I disagree on the term “bite-sized” and as per normal, I would have preferred a smaller “bite” of tortilla as the garnish.  The taste was perfect though.  I’m not sure if we’ll repeat this particular recipe or not, since we do both love a roasted beet.  But this was a good use of our excess beets we’d accumulated.

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