It is the long simmering which makes this simple recipe especially good. It can also be served chilled, of course. Although borscht (of which this is a version) is not usually pureed, this makes it extra special and suitable for family or dinner party fare. Surprisingly, this also freezes well.
BORSCHT (Russian Beet and Cabbage Soup)
750 g (1-1/2 lb) raw beet/beetroot, peeled and diced OR same of cooked* 1 small cabbage, thinly sliced 1/2 small carrot, chopped 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped 2 onions, chopped 1.5 litres (2-1/2 pints or 6 US cups) vegetable stock (homemade if you have it) sea salt to taste (depending on the salitiness of your stock) freshly ground black pepper 1-1/2 Tbsp vinegar (taste carefully as you add it) vegan yoghurt or vegan sour 'creme' for garnish grated cucumber for garnish
Put all the vegetables in a large pan and add the stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for 2 hours. (You could also do this in a crockpot or slow cooker.)
Put the soup in a blender in batches, season with salt and pepper and add a Tbsp of vinegar, then another half Tbsp depending on your taste. Reheat gently, garnish with the 'creme' and grated cucumber. Serves 6.
*If you are lazy like me, you may want to boil beets up one day - to use for another dish - and reserve the amount of beets needed for this soup. In that case, I like to boil the beets in their skins and then plunge them into cold water. That way the skins just slip off - far less trouble and less mess. Then you can add the cooked beets to the other ingredients as above. The soup is good either way.