This is a quick and easy borshch to prepare. Accompaniments, rye bread or pirog or piroshki, (any type). Kasha can also be served either on the side plate or 1 tablespoon put into the soup. This thickens the soup and makes it very filling. In fact it is a meal in itself.
600 grams (1½ pounds) raw beetroot
200 grams (8 ounces) potatoes
1 stalk celery
50 grams (2 ounces /4 Tablespoons) butter
200 grams (8 ounces) tomatoes
1 Tablespoon tomato puree
salt and pepper
1.75 liters (7½ cups) water, boiling
juice of ½ lemon
1 teaspoon sugar
For serving: 6 Tablespoons sour cream
1. Peel and wash the vegetables: Chop the onion finely and cut the beetroot, potato, and celery into thin strips.
2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and beetroot, cover, and cook slowly for 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
3. Pour in the boiling water and add the potatoes, celery, quartered tomatoes, and tomato puree. Salt and pepper to taste and add the lemon juice and sugar.
4. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 30–40 minutes until the vegetables are ready.
5. Serve with one tablespoon of sour cream in each bowl.
Recipe from The Best of Russian Cooking, by Nina Petrova