Thursday, November 20, 2008

Beet soup

Mick's Cold-Cure, Anti-Viral Beet Soup

Challenged by the rhinovirus lately? Here's an option that will at least make you feel better.

Take 3 pounds fresh beet roots, and dice to 3/8 inch cubes. Set aside.
Dice 1 pound carrots, set aside.
Optional: 1/2 pound parsnips. Slice these. They'll taste better sliced than diced. Set aside.
Chop finely 1 pound yellow onions. Fry these in olive oil in the bottom of a large soup kettle until translucent. Do not caramelize
Add the root vegetables. Cover and reduce heat to lowest setting. Cook very gently for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Do not allow vegetables to brown.

Add the following seasonings and stir in:
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 heaping teaspoon cumin seed

Add 1 20 ounce can of chopped tomatoes, or one quart jar of home-canned tomatoes, and stir well.

Add sufficient water to cover all the vegetables and then some.

Bring to boil, and simmer gently for at least an hour, preferably more. This is a good time to put the whole thing on the woodstove for a long while and go do something else, like take a walk for the benefit of that cold. The dog wants to go too. Don't forget the dog.

When you're almost ready to serve, add chopped fresh dill if you have it, and let it sit on top of the simmering soup for about five minutes to bring out the flavor. Serve a lot of the life-saving liquid, and a little of the roots in each bowl, piping hot.

Garnish each bowl with a dollop of yogurt or sour cream if you wish. Refrigerate whatever you don't eat today and save it for the next day, when it will taste even better.

This soup won First Prize in the Alliance for the Wild Rockies recipe competition, 1994. The extra ingredient that got the attention of the judges was Scots whiskey. But that was just a gimmick.

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