Monday, April 11, 2011

Indian borscht with raita

This borscht is unusual in that it is a hot soup, one you'll find useful for opening your sinuses and other pipes should you have congestion or a cold. It is warming in all the best ways.

Indian borscht with raita

                                                                                        Yield: 3 - 4 servings


2 small beets, about 3 - 5 cm. (1.5 - 2") in diameter
1 cup red onion, diced
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 small hot red pepper, seeds removed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon tandoori masala
3 - 5 cups beef, chicken or vegetable stock
1 tablespoon lemon juice
freshly ground black pepper corns
Garnish: fresh mint leaves

Beets, garlic, red onion, hot red pepper

1. Thoroughly wash beets. Remove any wilted or discoloured tops and roots. Place whole beets in the basket of a food steamer or pressure cooker. Cook beets in accordance with your steamer's or pressure cooker's instructions, or visit my post about using a pressure cooker. 

When cooked, remove beets to a heat-proof container and set aside to cool. Either reserve cooking liquid to use in this borscht preparation, or else store for later use in another recipe.

2. While beets are cooking, prepare the onion, garlic and hot red pepper.

3.When beets are cool enough to handle, slip the peels away. Dice. Reserve. 

4. Place prepared red onion, garlic and hot red pepper in a non-reactive soup kettle together with olive oil. Saute until soft, then add tandoori masala and heat through for a minute.

4.  Add diced beets, mixing well. Then add at least sufficient enough stock to cover the mixture. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to simmer for 5 minutes to enable flavours to mingle.

5. Add lemon juice and a grind of black pepper corns. 

6. Puree the mixture, either using a stationary blender or a hand-held blender. Simmer for 10 minutes over low heat. 

7. Meanwhile, make raita, as follows:


½ cup commercial yoghurt 
2 tablespoons finely diced cucumber, washed, unpeeled
1 teaspoon ground cumin, toasted
1 - 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh mint leaves
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Place all ingredients together in a small bowl and mix well.

8. Ladle hot Indian borscht into bowls, topping each with one or more tablespoons of raita. Garnish with fresh mint leaves.


Barry said...

Your recipe for Indian Borscht wit raita is well timed for spring when congestion becomes an issue. Even the names make it sound classy. Your blog is constantly improving and has a very clean, uncluttered look about it. You are building a fine assortment of recipes and nutritional information that will benefit many. I, on the other hand, am looking forward to getting back into the bush.

jara said...

Barry, I feel certain that your days of hiking in the bush will return soon, return in the sudden manner that weather has of changing here in Calgary. Anyway, you're waterproof, so you'll probably find a way to get there sooner rather than later.

As for my beet blog, it is a satisfying challenge to see how far I can push this thing. Or should I say 'drag this' thing? I haven't implemented all the tools we learned were available. Time. If I only had time...