Sunday, November 18, 2012

Borscht



Sunday November 18, 2012 

'Hospadee Blahaslovee'....... a deep breath .......

Hello, my name is Pam  and I have been wanting to write a blog on Cooking Vegetarian for a long time....to my daughter Anastasia thank you for sending me in the right direction with the link to writing this blog....to my son Rick if you read this blog I imagine you will watch my language carefully and I may even have to have you edit it.....and to my angel Alixander, thank you for the initial inspiration for the collection of recipes, your travels got me started ....so here we go....... I have been  cooking since I was a little girl and a vegetarian since birth.  Growing up my  Mother  encouraged  us too learn how to make some of our traditional Doukhobor  (Vegetarian)  dishes so that we would have these recipes and skills when we left to be on our own.    I moved away from my family home in  1979 when I got married and took these skills and recipes and continued to create more interesting  recipes for my husband, and then my children.    
As a Mother I wanted to make sure my family ate healthy  and that I knew exactly what was in each recipe/dish we ate.    

When my eldest son Alixander was travelling the world he would email me and ask for the recipe for 'this and that' as he was missing his favorite foods and wanted to share with friends on his travels, I would gladly email it off and this started my collection of  our favorite Family Recipes.    While living in Prince Rupert BC  I started to share some of my food with friends and then gift some of my friends with meals from my collection and from this came a Family Catering Business.......I enjoyed creating meals for those that requested some of my specialties ..........  I then decided to put all of our favorite recipes in a book and publish it!  My very first adventure in publishing, thus came the book ' Pam's Incredible Edibles - A Vegetarian Adventure.  This first started in Prince Rupert, BC where we lived at the time,  continued on to Fort St John, BC where we then lived at the time and where   I finally was able to 'self - publish' my cookbook.
 I really love to cook new dishes and try recreating recipes from other countries to keep them vegetarian - so keep watching for those creations... I appreciate your feed back and questions.....have fun !


   One of the traditional Doukhobor foods is Borscht - a cabbage soup filled with many other vegetables.  Borscht  is always served at weddings  and funerals.   So good, a perfect comfort food with a sliced of freshly baked bread ( will post this later)

Here is the recipe for Traditional Doukhobor Kootenay Borscht) from my cookbook   'Pam's Incredible Edibles  - A Vegetarian Adventure'  (borrowed and adjusted to my  family's taste from the very first Doukhobor cookbook  Practical Cook Book compiled by Laura P. Verigin  & Zoe H. Gulley)


Borscht





 
I highly recommend you prepare all  your ingredients as it makes the job  a lot faster.

 
These are the utentils, pots and pans your will need.
 

 
2  quarts canned tomatoes,   3 quarts water, 8 potatoes  peeled, 1 large head, cabbage, shredded,  1 diced green pepper ,2 carrots, peeled and diced, 3 celery stalks, diced, 2 onions , peeled and  diced , 1 beet peeled and sliced partially through  (it should stay in one piece),  1/2 cup dill ( fresh, frozen or dried) chopped fine,1/2-3/4 cup butter, 1/4 cup cream and salt and pepper

 
Into a large frying pan add 8 Tablespoons butter on medium heat,  add your chopped onions and saute until translucent, add 1/2 of the chopped green pepper and saute 3 minutes. To this you will be adding 1/3 of the shredded cabbage.


 
 Bring  3 quarts of water to a boil add 2 Tbsp salt and 5  of the peeled and halved potatoes along with the  beet, diced carrots and celery.   Add salt to taste.  Bring to a boil and simmer until the potatoes are just tender enough to put a knife through.   Take out potatoes into a large bowl.

 
The last 3 potatoes will be diced and added to the water mixture once the  halved potatoes are removed.

 
 

 
Add the 1/3 of the shredded cabbage to the  onion  and green pepper and saute all together for about 10 minutes, until cabbage is wilted and tender.

 
Add half of the chopped dill and mix.

 
While the  halved potatoes are cooking with the celery, carrots and beet - in a large pot add the tomatoes and 2 T bsp of  butter and  bring to a simmer.  When the  butter has melted you can turn off the heat.   You will be adding half of this to the water/vegetable pot once the halved potatoes are removed for mashing.
 
 

The last of the shredded cabbage, green pepper and the 3 diced potatoes will be added to the water  vegetable mixture once you remove the halved potatoes

 

 
This is what my stove looks like when everything is doing it 's thing.   It's important to continue tasting 'the broth' as it will need to be adjusted with salt and pepper to your liking.
 
 
 
 
 
Here is your cream, butter and dill, salt and pepper ready  for the  potatoes you will be taking out for mashing.
 

 
The first of the cabbage, onion, green pepper and dill is sauteed nicely.  Turn off heat
You will be adding this to the  water mixture once the diced potatoes have cooked for about 10 minutes. The simmered tomatoes, mashed potatoes with the cream are added at this time as well. 
 

 
Remove halved potatoes when knife inserted in the middle goes through and place in large  bowl with the cream, dill and more butter,  freshly grated black pepper

 
Add about 1 1/2 cups of the simmer tomatoes and mash  you will be adding this after the diced  3 potatoes are added back to the water and
vegetables along with the rest of the shredded cabbage, green pepper and dill.

With a slotted spoon, take out the beet and set aside.  This is good for a snack later.

The finished borscht ready to be eaten and jarred.  I pour some into a large pot for supper and then seal the rest. (see  below)

 Delicious with a slice of my freshly baked bread and some butter and a slice or two of  your favourite cheese,

 
I seal the  extra borscht in jars and store in the fridge.  I recycle 'pickle jars' they have to have a rubber seal  in the lid but sterilized and the lids warmed work very well.  This will store in your fridge for a month or two.....if it lasts that long.

 
This recipe makes 6 large jars (quart size and a large pot) the one show in the pictures above.


BORSCHT

Makes approximately 9 quarts

2 quarts tomatoes
3 quarts water - you can add more if you like it thinner
8 medium potatoes, 5 cut in half, 3 diced
2 large onions, diced
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
1 medium beet, peeled, and cut 3/4 of the way down in both directions  (but still one piece)
2 stalks celery, diced
1  medium green pepper, diced
1 bunch dill minced (if you like dill  use a large  bunch)
1 large head cabbage, shredded
1/4 - 1/2 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup butter
salt, pepper to taste


In a large pot, bring 3 quarts water to a boil, add salt to taste and then add the diced celery, carrots, 5 halved potatoes and beet.  Bring to a boil and then turn down heat, simmer untl the potatoes are tender enough to put a knife through the centre. 

In a large  pot  add all the tomatoes and 2 Tbsp of the butter and bring to a simmer,  once the butter has melted about 10 minutes, turn off heat and set aside.

In a large frying pan, melt 1/4 cup butter and add the onions, saute until translucent about 4 minutes then add 1/2 of the green pepper and 1/3 of the shredded cabbage and saute until the cabbage has wilted and is tender.  Turn off heat and set aside.

When the halved potatoes are tender remove them into a large bowl and add the rest of the butter and the cream, dill and 1/4 cup of the simmered tomatoes.  Mash and set aside.

To the pot of vegetables, add the 3 diced potatoes, the rest of the shredded cabbage and 1/2 of the pot of  tomatoes and simmer 10 minutes, then add the mashed potato mixture along with the sauteed cabbage mixture and the rest of the tomatoes and dill.  Taste to see if this needs more salt to your taste and bring to a boil.  Once it come to a boil you are done!

We love to eat it with  some cayenne pepper sprinkled over top (my Grandfather used to take the whole dry cayenne pepper and drop it into his bowl and just let it sit in his  bowl until he thought it was to his 'taste') then remove it and enjoy it with freshly baked bread, butter and some cheese!


You can pour off enough into a pot for supper, or lunch or even breakfast!  Seal the rest and you will have borscht when you want it!
Enjoy and remember to just have fun! 

Dobrii Chas.....(Good Luck)
Pam