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Monday, December 7, 2009

Sweet and Sour Borscht

We at Organic Campus know that at times after hauling your bag of veggies back home, the last thing you want to do is search through your stack of cookbooks to find that ideal recipe. Naturally we'd like to lend a hand and share some of our favourite recipes that incorporate local fruits and veggies yet still dazzle the taste buds and boast great nutrition.

The recipe for this week is borscht: a traditional Eastern European soup most commonly associated with its Ukrainian and Russian version which is made with beet roots as the principle ingredient and served hot. With a dark ruby red colour, it is an appealing dish on the table and is complemented well with a dollop of sour cream or yogurt. The dish is also a power house of nutrition with its preponderance of beets, cabbage, and carrots. According to The World's Healthiest Foods website, beets derive their rich colour from a pigment called betacyanin which also acts as a powerful cancer-fighting agent. The are also a great source of folate, potassium, magnesium, and a good source of iron, dietary fibre, copper, vitamin C, and potassium.

4 medium or 3 large beets
1 large onion, diced.
2 large carrots
2 cups of shredded red or green cabbage
4-5 medium sized jerusalem artichokes or small potatoes (optional).
6 cups of vegetable stock or 3 cups of stock and 3 cups of organic miso.
1/4-1/3 cup of lemon juice, depending on desired acidity, or use 1 tbs-2tbs of lemon grass or
lemon balm if you have this local herb at hand.
1 tps of dillweed.
2 tbs of olive or vegetable oil.
salt and pepper to taste.

1. Heat oil in a large pot and add the diced onion.
2. While the onion cooks and becomes translucent, peel beets and carrots and shred in food processor or by hand. Shred the cabbage coarsely by hand at this point if not already done. You can put it in the food processor as well, though it will make the dish lack variety in texture.
3. Halfway through the shredding phase, throw in the jerusalem artichokes, sliced, into the pot with the onions.
4. Add beets, carrots, cabbage, lemon juice or lemon herbs, dill, and stock to the pot. Bring mix to a gradual boil then reduce to a simmer.
5. Cover and continue to simmer while stirring occasionally until the beets, cabbage, and carrots become soft.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste and more lemon juice/herbs if desired.

Serve hot with some yogurt on top if you'd like or some crusty garlic bread. Serves approximately six.


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