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Traditional Ukrainian Borscht

Every family and region of the Ukraine, and in fact most of Eastern Europe has their own version of this hearty beet soup. Today I am sharing my mother's recipe that has been passed down as many generations as I can trace.
This soup can be made using a chicken stock and include slices of Kovbasa or finely ground beef if desired. I stick to vegetarian which is how it's prepared for Ukrainian Christmas Eve dinner.
I want to breakdown a proper Ukrainian Christmas feast closer to the holidays but recently a coworker of my husband asked for my recipe. I figured this would be a perfect time to whip up a pot.  
The thickness provided by the tomatoes and starch from the potatoes give a great hearty quality to this dish. The red cabbage is perfect to mirror the deep purple of the beets, and I adore the smell of cabbage cooking. 
 Traditional Ukrainian Borscht 
  • 5 cups vegetable stock
  • 4 large beets, washed well
  • 3 large potatoes, peeled and chopped into cubes
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and shredded.
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 head red cabbage, cored and shredded
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 - 4 Tbsp sugar
  • salt and papper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
  • sour cream and dill for topping


1. Place beets in a large pot and fill with just enough water to cover them. Cover pot and boil until tender, about 35 minutes. Remove from water and set aside to cool.

2. Add broth, carrots,and potatoes to beet water and boil covered for about 15 minutes, then add onions, garlic, cabbage, and diced tomatoes.

3. Peel and dice beets and add to pot for 30 minutes. Add tomato sauce, sugar, dill, salt, and pepper then reduce to simmer for 10 minutes

4. Serve hot topped with sour cream and dill for garnish.


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