We love buying beets, not only for their fantastic colour but also for their amazing shelf live. There is no denying that borscht, hearty, yet satisfying is the pride of old polish cooking. We prepare as well meatless version of it for Christmas Eve feast. 

Base for today's dish though is rich beef broth. Bart's mom - Mrs. Izabela makes the tastiest borscht ever and we got this recipe from her. Adding vinegar to raw betroots in stage one of the recipe helps to retain beautiful deep reddish-purple colour, and borscht itself is sufficiently acidic in taste and really essential in flavor.

Polish borscht

  • 2 kg beetroots
  • 1 kg beef
  • a bunch of vegetables for the broth (carrot, parsley, celery, onion)
  • 150g bacon
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 onions
  • 1 tbs white vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbs sugar
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 5 grains allspice
  • 5 tbs red borscht concentrate (optional, available in eastern european shops)
  • 1 tbs marjoram
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parsley for garnish

Peel beets and cut into pieces, place in bowl and mix with the vinegar, salt and sugar, leave it covered for few hours or preferably overnight. Prepare meat broth, in a large pot place beef and bacon, add bay leaves, allspice and peeled vegetables, cover with water. Bring to the boil, than cook slowly over low heat for about 1.5 hours, strain. We should get around 3 liters of broth. Than add to the broth beets, sliced ​​garlic, and cook again on a low heat for another 30 minutes. Season with marjoram, salt and pepper. Ready soup serve with polish uszka -  little ears (they are small dumplings with meat - which we can use from cooking the broth). Decorate with freshly ground black pepper and chopped parsley.