Cut tops from beets 2 inches from the roots. Scrub beets thoroughly; cover with
cold water, and boil 15 minutes or until tender enough to pierce with a wooden pick.
While beets are boiling, wash leaves and chop fine in a wooden bowl. The stems may
be used, too.
Strain liquid from beets into a bowl or soup pot. Slip skins from
beets and grate them using a fine grater.
Grate onion into grated beets. Add this
to the strained beet juice, boiled water and chopped beet tops.
Add salt and bring
to a quick boil. Reduce heat and cook 5 minutes.
Add vinegar sweetened to taste
with brown sugar.
Cool and chill in closed jars.
Add a boiled potato, 3 tablespoons diced cucumber and 1 heaping tablespoon sour
cream to each bowl just before serving.
Use fresh dill for garnish, if desired.
Add 1 hardboiled egg, diced or sliced, to each serving in addition
to or in place of the other garnish;
For a fleishig (meat) borsht, use diced or grated cooked beets with 1 1/2 to
2 pounds brisket of beef. Cook 1 1/2 hours or until meat is tender. Add same ingredients
including tops and seasoning 15 minutes before serving. Thicken hot borsht by stirring
in 1 egg yolk per serving. Add boiled potato. Or substitute garnish of sliced hardboiled
Cook 1 cupful diced rhubarb with borsht and omit vinegar or lemon juice;
For a summertime cooler, serve strained meatless beet borsht (with or without
rhubarb), in tall glasses topped with fresh mint after thickening with a little
Make a borsht cocktail by adding sparkling water or lemon soda to strained chilled