It’s not essential to roast the beets, but it gives the soup a depth of flavor that only roasting can provide. The soups’s color is a deep magenta, which almost makes it not look like food.
Roasted Winter Borscht
Author: Sally Sampson
Serves: About 9 to 10 cups
- 2 bunches beets (about 8), quartered
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 Spanish onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, sliced
- 1 celery stalk, sliced
- 1 tomato (any kind is fine), cored and diced
- 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- ¼ teaspoon sugar
- ½ cup orange juice
- 1 cup buttermilk (optional)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or mint
- Crème fraîche, sour cream, or plain yogurt, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Rub the beets lightly with 2 teaspoons oil, place on a tray or a rack, and roast for 30 to 40 minutes.
- After the beets have been in the oven for 20 minutes, place a stockpot over medium heat and, when it is hot,add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil. Add the onion, carrot, and celery, and cook until tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the beets, tomato, stock, sugar, and orange juice. Raise the heat to high and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to low and cook until the beets are very tender, about 10 minutes.
- Off heat, gradually add the buttermilk, if desired. Transfer to a blender in batches and blend until smooth. Serve garnished with chopped fresh dill or mint and sour cream, if desired, or transfer to a container, cover, and refrigerate overnight.