Cold beet borscht, one of my favorite summer soups, is an Eastern European classic, but it has been a staple in many American kitchens for years. The following recipe is a far cry from the bottled borscht I grew up on, which was just shredded beets with beet juice in a bottle. This version elevates that basic soup with vegetables and fragrant dill weed. Sweet julienned carrot and refreshing cucumber added just before serving give it extra crunch.
There are additional embellishments you can add depending upon your tastes. Chopped or sliced radishes and cooked egg add a pretty and colorful look. Sometimes I blend half the amount of the sour cream into the soup with a whisk or an immersion blender, which gives the soup a rosy color. Any way you decide to serve this, accompany the soup with slices of your favorite whole grain bread and butter.
This is a lovely lunch entree or a first course for a more elaborate dinner. I like to serve the soup in oversized glass balloon goblets for a dramatic presentation. You can also serve this in shallow white soup plates for an elegant look.
Cold Beet Borscht with Carrots, Cucumbers, and Sour Cream
Recipe notes: When peeling the beets, use disposable plastic gloves and place the beets on a foil lined board so you don’t discolor the board or your hands when cutting them.