August 11th, 2021
Brrr, soup really is the best remedy for this cold snap (+ a hottie and a pair of snuggly slippers). Just when I thought winter was coming to an early end (I know wishful thinking!) the heavy frosts are back. A frost in our valley means a frozen garden until 9.30 am when the sun finally finds its way over the crest of the hill. I have my fingers and toes crossed that the tomato seeds I have just sown survive as they won’t germinate below 18°C. I am constantly moving the tray between the fire and the sunroom and back again to try and maintain an even temperature. Oh, the joys of gardening in the south!
Today I have shared this fabulous beetroot soup that has become a favourite this winter. I have shared quite a number of soup recipes over the years and have compiled a list below – just in case beetroot isn’t your thing I am sure there is one below that tickles your fancy…
- Creamy Mushroom & Fennel Soup
- Lettuce & Pea Soup with Popped Pumpkin Seeds (so good!)
- Nicky’s Tomato & Vegetable Soup
- Nana’s Nourishing Chicken Soup
- Soul-Warming Winter Shank Soup
Beetroot, Caraway & Black Pepper Soup
A vegetable-packed borscht-style soup with a hint of caraway and a good dose of cracked black pepper. With a secret ingredient of pickled gherkins to add a gentle sweet-sour flavour. The key is to finely slice (onions and celery) and grate (carrots and beetroot) the vegetables so they are a similar size and mingle together into one delicious combination of vegetables that all become vibrantly dyed by the beetroot.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced on an angle
- 2 carrots, grated
- 2 medium beetroot*, about 300g, grated
- 4 pickled gherkins, grated
- 5 cups (1.25 litres) vegetable stock
- 1 tsp caraway seeds or crushed coriander seeds
- ½ tsp salt
- Generous grind of black pepper
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- Sour cream and chopped chives to serve
In a large saucepan add the oil and onion, sauté over a low heat for 10 minutes. Prepare the celery and carrots, and add to the pan as they are ready. Continue to cook over the gentle heat to create a flavour base for the soup (similar to a mirepoix).
Add the beetroot, gherkins, stock, caraway, salt and pepper. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes, until the beetroot is tender*.
Add the vinegar and check the taste, adding extra salt and/or pepper if needed.
Serve hot bowls of soup with a dollop of sour cream and sprinkle of chives.
*Pre-cooked whole beetroot can also be used (roasted or boiled). Simply peel, grate and use as above. Reduce cooking time by 10 minutes.
*Recipe first published 26th June 2021 on Stuff.co.nz