Saturday, 18 June 2011

Beet Me Up!

Zuppa Fredda di Barbabietola
Chilled Beetroot Soup

Here's a little "quickie" for you! Remember I bought a bunch of beet roots the other day? I boiled 5-6 of them to make the carpaccio and only ended up needing 2. So on this hot and sunny Saturday, I am here wondering what to make for a lunchtime snack. I am not really that hungry, but I feel like something refreshing, light, fresh and easy. You can see me heading for my fridge already, can't you? And you already know what I am going to make...

If the Spanish can have their Gazpacho, then I can make a chilled beetroot soup. It's that simple. But it needs to be COOL as well as simply being chilled. The other cool thing about it, is that we can make two good portions out of 3 leftover beets and you can't complain at that!

In a small frying pan, fry together about a spoonful each of grated onion, ginger, garlic, carrot and celery in a little olive oil. You only need to do this for 3-4 minutes... just so that the ingredients are no longer raw. Now add a tablespoon of sugar and continue stirring until everything caramelizes. Once this has happened, add a tablespoonful of vegetable bouillon powder and a cupful of orange juice. Stir rapidly to incorporate all of the ingredients and remove from heat. Pour into a bowl, add a handful of ice cubes and refrigerate. Amazingly enough we are almost done!

Coarsely chop the beets, add a spring onion, a tablespoon of sugar, a pinch of salt, a squeeze of lemon and a dash of Tabasco. I added about a handful of fresh basil into mine too. All you need to do now is to add the chilled, seasoned juice and to blend everything together. Despite the fact that we have added a little sugar, the beets may still have that strong, earthy flavor to them, but you can add honey or maple syrup to balance that out. A final squeeze of lemon juice and a little olive oil and the soup is ready. Pop it back in the fridge to stay cool whilst you prepare a little yogurt topping. This is simply plain yogurt, with finely chopped chives, mint, some lemon zest, a little salt and a little sugar.

I knew I wouldn't be going out again today... so I added a good shot of vodka into mine! This isn't such a strange idea, as you would traditionally drink vodka with your "Borscht" over there... but then again- you would be drinking vodka with EVERYTHING over there anyway!

"Na zdorovje!"

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