Lenten Borscht with Mushrooms

Wash dried porcini mushrooms thoroughly, place into a pot, add 1 onion cut in halves and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and let it simmer for 2-2 ½ hours. Add salt when mushroom broth is ready. Take mushrooms out of the pot, wash under cold running water and cut into strips. Strain the broth.  

If you are using sauerkraut for this borscht, take the needed amount out of the fridge, take any peppercorns and bay leaves out and squeeze out any excess liquid. Heat oil in a skillet, cut beetroots into thin strips and add into the skillet along with 2 tablespoons of mushroom broth. Using a spatula, mix the beetroot in the skillet and let it cook on medium heat for 20 minutes. Add finely shredded fresh cabbage or sauerkraut that you have prepared earlier and cook for another 15 minutes. Add flour, tomato juice, bay leaves and peppercorns and cook for additional 10 minutes. In a separate skillet, roast your boiled cut mushrooms and finely cut yellow onion for 15 minutes.

Take the beetroot you are using for the brew and cut into fine strips, place into a saucepan, add a cup of mushroom broth and 1 teaspoon of white vinegar. Slowly bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes. Strain the beetroot brew.

Bring mushroom broth to a boil. Transfer roasted mushrooms, beetroot and cabbage/sauerkraut mix into a pot with boiling broth. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add salt and beetroot brew and after it begins to boil, remove from heat.

You will need:

For broth:  

  • Water – 6 cups
  • Dried porcini mushrooms – 3 oz
  • Less than a teaspoon of salt

For borscht:      

  • Beetroot – 14 oz
  • Beetroot for the brew – 4 oz
  • Fresh green cabbage or sauerkraut – 7 oz
  • 1 yellow onion
  • Tomato juice – 4 tablespoons
  • Vegetable oil – 4 tablespoons
  • All-purpose flour – 1 tablespoon
  • White vinegar – 1 teaspoon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4-5 peppercorns
  • Salt – to taste

An option:

If you wish, you may also add fresh tomatoes. 5 minutes before the borscht is ready, skin 4-5 tomatoes, cut in halves, delete all the seeds and cut into small pieces and add to your borscht.

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