Spring Borscht + Warm Beet Greens Salad

June 10, 2013

We love the idea of Meatless Mondays, and want to provide balanced, delicious meal plans in hopes that you'll join us -- whether you're vegetarian all the time or just here and there.

Today, the season's most brightly-hued vegetable takes center stage twice, for double the impact. Earthy beets add heft --and color! -- to a zippy borscht, while the greens are used in a creamy, fresh warm salad. This meal will excite your tastebuds without weighing you down -- just what spring demands.

The Menu

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Click through on the recipe photos or titles to see (and save and print) the full recipes, but we've also written you a handy grocery list and game plan below.

Dr. Zhivago Borscht by NakedBeet


Warm Beet Greens with Sour Cream Dressing by amanda

The Grocery List

Serves 4, with leftovers

1 onion
3 beets
Greens from 2 bunches of beets
2 carrots
1 large potato
1 celery stalk
1/4 bunch fresh dill
1 lemon
12 juniper berries (optional)
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon sour cream
Hearty bread, for serving

We're assuming you already have a bay leaf, cider vinegar, sugar, cooking oil, salt and pepper on hand. If not, you'll be needing those things, too! 

The Plan

1. Set a pot of water on low heat. Add in oil, chopped onion, bay leaf and juniper berries (if using). Peel the beets and cut into halves, thirds or quarters, depending on size. You want them to be roughly the same size pieces. Add to pot.

2. Peel and cut the carrots into rounds, and cut the potatoes into small chunks. Add both to the pot with the chopped celery and the juice of 1/2 of a fresh lemon. Bring your heat up and cook the soup until a fork easily pierces through one of the larger beet pieces; this should take about 15 minutes on medium low heat.

3. While soup is cooking, begin the salad. Whisk together the sour cream, vinegar, sugar, and salt for the dressing. Next, steam the greens, in 1/4 cup of water, in a large sauté pan for 3 to 4 minutes. Set dressing and greens aside.

4. Skim any foam from the soup, and add a touch more oil. Scoop the beets out and shred them. Return them to the pot, and cook 10 more minutes. Next, add dill, and salt and pepper to taste.

5. Ladle soup into bowls for serving. Toss the greens with the dressing, and place on a large platter. Serve with hearty bread. Enjoy!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Pao Domínguez Luttmann
    Pao Domínguez Luttmann
  • amysarah
  • ktchnninja
  • Pegeen

Written by: Sarah_Sherwood

Editorial Intern at Food52


Pao D. June 10, 2013
Has anyone tried the borscht but with a sour cream substitute? :)
ktchnninja June 10, 2013
I usually use full- or low-fat plain yogurt (you could probably try Greek but I don't like the taste). I use it in cold recipes and also in warmer ones where the yogurt doesn't sit over the stove but is just stirred in at the end.
Pao D. June 10, 2013
I'll try with yogurt then... Thank you!
amysarah June 10, 2013
This must be a sign - I have a borscht recipe (though a cold one) that I've been dithering around about posting, and was going to try to get to today. I like the beet green salad idea...I love beet borscht with a salad with blue cheese (beets/blue cheese are good pals) - maybe a sprinkling on this one would work?
Pegeen June 11, 2013
Go Amy! I tried to make your borscht lat night for my folks' dinner, guessing at measurements, and it was delicious, but I was going to ask you to have a go to be sure I did it right. Recipe, please! :-)
amysarah June 11, 2013