Disclaimer: In December 2019, I was commissioned to develop a variety of recipes for Dairy Australia. This is one of them, featuring the use of cream. Styling and photography by me. Both the recipe and the photo is now property of Dairy Australia, however I was given permission to publish them on my website. © Dairy Australia. All rights reserved.
A Russian friend of mine gave me a wonderful present last year. It’s a Soviet cookbook called “CCCP Cook Book – True stories of Soviet cuisine”.
The photos are oh so 70’s (food styling in the USSR in those times was very different to what we see today!) and each recipe comes with a little story, a little bit of history about food in the Soviet era.
I had the book out one day, and just harvested some fresh beetroot from the garden, so of course a good old Borscht came to mind. There seem to be a million varieties out there, but many are served with sour cream. I really liked the idea of a sour soup, so for my version of Borscht, I added a sour apple to really make it refreshing rather than the typical earthy flavour.
I also like to roast my beets before adding them to the soup. It just gives it a more complex flavour profile, almost a little sweeter. And while most recipes use sour cream more like a garnish, I chose to feature it. After all, this recipe was meant to highlight the use of cream! The result is quite surprising and I was immediately thinking this would be a great summer soup, eaten cold, like a gazpacho!
Roasted beetroot and sour cream soup
- 500 g raw beetroot
- 25 ml extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
- 30 g unsalted butter
- 1 leek sliced
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 carrot grated, minced
- 1 apple grated
- 1 litre vegetable stock
- 3 bay leaves
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 200 g + 100g sour cream
- dill to garnish
- Preheat the oven to 220°C (fan forced 200°C).
- Cut beetroot into medium sized pieces, toss in olive oil and smoked paprika, then arrange on a large baking tray and roast in the oven for 30 minutes until tender.
- In a large pot, melt butter and sauté leek until soft. Add garlic and fry for a minute before stirring in carrot, apple and the roasted beetroot. Cook until fragrant, 2-3 minutes.
- Pour in vegetable stock and season with bay leaves, salt, sugar and pepper. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Take off the heat, remove bay leaves, then drop in 200g sour cream. Blend with a stick blender until very smooth and creamy. Adjust seasoning if necessary.
- Serve in bowls, with a dollop of sour cream and a few sprigs of dill to garnish.