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Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth…

September 20, 2012

…Ok, so I’m not calling my neighbour a horse, but he did bring us round two big beetroot, which was jolly decent of him (and coincidentally, he does have a rather long face).

The only problem being, I don’t really like beetroot.  But one mustn’t turn down free food – there is a recession on, you know.

So, I scratched my head, thought of Borscht, decided that wasn’t original enough, spent around eight hours scouring through my substantial collection of cookery books,  to come up with a recipe not so different from Borscht.  Hmm, could of saved myself a bit of time there.

Anyway, I’ve low-carbed it (which basically involved ditching the milk in favour of lots of lovely whipping cream) and here you have it.

Cream of Beetroot Soup.  Serves about six people.  Unless you’re a pig like me. Then it’s more like four people.

60g unsalted Butter
2 large Onions, finely chopped
1 large Carrot
2 Celery Sticks
400-500g cooked Beetroot, diced*
1 and a half tablespoons Lemon Juice
750-850ml Chicken Stock
300ml Whipping Cream
Salt and Pepper

A blob of Soured Cream or soft Goats’ Cheese and some fresh snipped Chives to serve.  Plus a hunk of freshly baked bread for anyone not observing low carb.

*If your gift horse brings you raw beetroot, it’s easy to turn it into the cooked variety.  Pop it into a baking tin, whole, glug over some olive oil, season with sea salt and black pepper and chuck in a medium over for 1-2 hours, until you can easily stick a knife into it.  Wait for it to cool and then just slip the skin off.

1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan and fry the onions, carrots and celery on a medium heat, until they just begin to colour.  Should take about 10 minutes.

2. Add your beetroot, a tablespoon of the lemon juice, the stock (enough to cover your veg) and season generously.  Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and leave to cook for 30 minutes.

3. Allow to cool slightly, then blend, using a food processor, or if you really want to make a mess of your kitchen like me, a stick blender.  Pop back onto the heat, pour in the cream and warm it through.  Taste it and season some more, plus add the rest of the lemon juice, if it needs it, which it probably will.

4. Garnish as you see fit, then devour.

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