Mrs. Kostyra's Borscht

  • Yield: Makes about 8 cups
Mrs. Kostyra's Borscht

Source: Martha Stewart Living, June 2002


  • 4 medium beets, scrubbed well
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 dried mushrooms (morels and porcini; about 1/2 ounce)
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • Homemade Vegetable Stock
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped celery leaves
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice or citric acid, to taste
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped dill


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place beets on a piece of parchment paper -- lined aluminum foil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Fold up edges of foil and parchment to enclose beets. Place on a small baking sheet, and bake until tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 1 hour. Let stand until cool enough to handle. Peel, and coarsely grate; set aside.

  2. Soak mushrooms in hot water for 30 minutes. Drain through a fine-mesh sieve, reserving liquid. Coarsely chop mushrooms; set aside.

  3. In a medium stockpot, combine stock, beets, mushrooms, mushroom liquid, celery leaves, parsley, garlic, sugar, a large pinch of salt, and a large pinch of pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes.

  4. Add lemon juice or citric acid. Taste, and adjust for seasoning. In a small bowl, combine sour cream and flour, stirring until no lumps remain. Whisk in a ladleful of soup, then whisk the sour-cream mixture into the soup. Cook until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in dill just before serving.


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