K-Dramas have taken over my life! If you’re wondering why I haven’t posted the last couple of weeks, its because I’ve been CONSUMED with this Korean import. After many weeks of smiles, tears, and heart wrenching emotional torment, I noticed something important. No matter what […]
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Brussels Sprouts and Broccoli Slaw with Orange Walnut Vinaigrette, sounds quite fancy and complex, but its actually fast, simple and inexpensive to prepare with the help of your trusty blender and Japanese Mandolin. This slaw is a perfect holiday side for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Brussels Sprouts are my favorite green vegetable and always have been. These tiny cruciferous vegetables are in season now and its common to find them sold on the stalk at your local grocery store. I commonly refer to Brussels Sprouts on the stalk as, “Limited Edition Brussels Sprouts,” because they’re always sold out the same day they hit the shelves at my Trader Joe’s. I feel I have a better chance buying, limited edition LOL Surprise dolls, than Brussels Sprouts on the stalk at TJ’s. This year we scored a two pound bag of Brussels Sprouts at out local Giant Grocery for $2.99. The ingredients for this recipe are very inexpensive around this time of year. Your only real splurge will be the walnuts, you will use in the salad and the vinaigrette.
The Japanese Mandolin
This is by far the most used tool in my kitchen, I use this when making salads, garnishes or practically any recipe that involves a potato. I love thinly sliced vegetables. Shaving food paper thin not only make food visually appealing but, each bite becomes mrtender and delicate therefore enhancing the overall flavor.
About $27 on Amazon will get you one of these babies, they are easy to clean and maintain. I strongly recommend using a no cut glove or the plastic guard that comes with the tool. It’s easy slip and lose some skin, I’ve done it.
*Always be careful when using this tool.
Start by washing your vegetables thoroughly, then pealing away some of the outer leaves. Prepare 1 pound of Brussels Spouts by shaving them paper thin, about 1/16th of an inch, on a mandolin or with a sharp knife. This makes about 6 cups shaved.
Next, prep your broccoli florets. You’ll want to use small florets for this slaw, about 1/2 inch long. This is achieved by trimming away all of the stalks and breaking the florets apart with your hands or a small pairing knife. Two small heads of broccoli will yield 3 cups of 1/2 inch florets.
Always Toast your Nuts
Then, it’s time to toast the walnuts, these will go into your salad and your vinaigrette as well. Toasting the nuts enhances both flavor and aroma. The easiest way to do this is in a 400 degree oven for 2 minutes. Keep an eye on your nuts the whole time, making sure nothing is burning. This has the potential to go south very fast.
Once the nuts have toasted get them off the hot sheet pan right away and start preping the rest of your ingredients.
You will need the zest and juice one navel orange along with one clove of garlic, chopped. Reserve 1 teaspoon of the zest for this recipe and keep the rest for another day. *Kale sauteed with a little garlic and orange zest makes a delicious last minute side.
To make the vinaigrette add all the ingredients, walnuts, orange juice, orange zest, mustard, garlic, vinegar, salt, olive oil and honey, into a blender and let er rip. The mustard and walnuts will help this dressing emulsify and retain a stable emulsion for a while.
Combine your shaved Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli, Chopped Toasted Walnuts, Dried Cranberries in a bowl and your ready to rock.
Keep the dressing on the side and dress the slaw right before service for optimal crunch.
However, Brussels Sprouts are hardy greens and the left over salad will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
I hope you enjoyed this recipe. Please let me know how it turned out in the comments below.
Brussels Sprout and Broccoli Slaw with Orange Walnut Vinaigrette
- 6 Cups Brussels Sprouts shaved or thinly sliced
- 3 Cups Broccoli Florets 1/2 inch long
- 1 Cup Dried Cranberries I like Ocean Spay
- 1 Cup Toasted Walnuts chopped
- 2/3 Cup Orange Walnut Vinaigrette
Orange Walnut Vinaigrette
- 2 Tbsp Toasted Walnuts chopped
- 1 clove Garlic minced or pressed
- 1 each Orange Juiced
- 1/2 tsp Orange Zest
- 1 Tbsp Vinegar Apple Cider, White Wine or Rice Wine
- 1 tsp Mustard
- 1 tsp Salt Kosher or flaked sea salt
- 2 tsp Honey or maple syrup
- 1 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil on any other salad oil you like
To make the dressing
Combine all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth, creamy and viscous.
Refrigerate until ready to use.
To assemble the salad
Combine Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli Florets, Dried Cranberries and Toasted Walnuts in a large mixing bowl.
Toss with vinaigrette shortly before serving.
Will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container.
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There are as many recipes for Borsch as there are families in Eastern Europe. The country, region, religion, socioeconomic status and time of year determine how a family prepares their recipe.
There are red, green, and white
There are Lenten varieties, vegetarian varieties and many different ways to infuse the quintessential sour element to the soup.
The Origins of Borsch
Borsch, the iconic Russian soup with its signature fuchsia hue, actually originated in Ukraine. The humble peasant soup that made its way all the way up the socioeconomic ladder to the gilded tables of Tsar Alexander II. There is much folklore from all over eastern Europe of how the favorite soup came to be, one account drastically different from the next.
It’s important to note that the original Borsch recipes going back to the 16th century did not resemble the soup we eat today.
It is, however, generally agreed upon that contemporary Borsch, the pretty fuchsia one, originated somewhere in the area of Ukraine in the 18th century.
Making Borsch is a multi-step process that has carried over from the days of the PECHKA, a Russian stone mason oven of the 12th century that continues its use even today. Meat broth would be cooked first, and the vegetables were braised separately before adding to the soup so that everything would be perfectly tender at the same time. The addition of pre-cooked vegetables to the broth is called Zapravka, this unique method separates Borsch into its own category of soups. Whether or not the Borsch is an actual soup or a technique is an argument in and of itself.
Flavor and Quality
The most essential element of Red Winter Borsch ( the pretty fuchsia one)is the balance of sweet and sour.
Today Hogweed is no longer used in the preparation of Borsch, the sweetness instead comes from carrots, beets, and table sugar.
The sourness happens in a variety of way, this is up to the cook and will depend on heritage or personal preference. Kvass, Pickled Beets, Lemon Juice, Citric Acid, Vinegar and even sour cherries have all been used in the past to give Borsch its unique acidic flavor.
In my family, my Ukrainian grandmother uses sour cherries in her Borsch, while my Russian grandmother uses Lemon Juice.
Borsch is a very thick and hearty soup, the Russian measurement of quality is to stand a spoon straight up in the cup. If the spoon stands on its own, it’s quality Borsch. This soup can feed an army for a minimal cost and is a favorite of the Russian Navy.
Our Family Recipe
This recipe is my grandmother’s. It has been slightly adapted by my mother and then adapted somewhat by me and will most likely be adapted somewhat by my own daughter in a few more years.
PS. Little girls love the “Pink Soup.”
I did my college internship at the food network in Chelsea Market NY Manhattan. I once made this soup for them, and they ate the entire 3-gallon pot in one afternoon. People were coming up for second’s and thirds, and my heart swelled with pride for my family and my heritage.
The talk of the week was Anna’s Borsch and for many weeks after some of the crew would ask when I would be making it again. I was so happy that our humble Borsch brought them so much joy that I almost gave the recipe away to Food Network Kitchen to publish. I was encouraged not to by a mentor, and I’m happy I took his advice because I get to tell its story now, on my own blog.
I hope you enjoy this heirloom family recipe. I feel so happy and privileged to be welcomed into your home and to have the opportunity to share a part of my heritage with you and your family. If you would like to try, some other Ukrainian recipes check out my Stuffed Cabbage Rolls recipe.
The recipe yields 1 gallon and can feed up to 12 people for only $15.29 or $1.28 per serving.
Ukrainian Winter Borsch
- 4 Quarts Prepared broth
- 2 Each Carrots Shredded (4oz)
- 1 Each Beet w/tops Julienned (10oz)
- 1 Cup Beet Greens Chopped
- 1 Each small onion Diced (3oz)
- 2 cloves garlic Minced
- 1 clove garlic Crushed
- 1 each Medium Tomato Grated
- 2 C Julienned cabbage
- 1 Each Red bell pepper Julienned
- 2 Each Medium Yukon gold potatoes Diced
- 1/2 Each Lemon Juiced
- 1 Tbsp sugar + more to finish
- 4 tsp salt + more to finish
- 1/4 Cup parsley Chopped
- 1/4 Cup dill Chopped
- 2 Each sprigs thyme Chopped
- TT Sour cream Garnish
- 1 Gallon Q Water
- 2 Pound Pork loin country style rib bone in Cut into chunks or pork ribs
- 1 Cup White beans Soaked
- 1 Each Carrot Peeled
- 1 Each Small yellow onion Skin on
- 1 Each Bay leaf
- 6 Each Sprig of parsley
Prepare broth by first blanching the pork ribs. Cover ribs with 1 inch of water and slowly bring to a boil over medium heat. Once boiling remove from heat, drain and rinse the ribs.
To a large stock pot add, 5Q cold water, blanched bones, 1 peeled carrot, 1 small onion (skin on), 1 bay leaves, 4 sprigs of parsley( leaves and stems) and bring to a simmer slowly and continue to simmer for 30min.
Drain the white beans and add to the pot, continue to simmer another 30 or until the beans are tender.
Season with 3t of salt.
Add diced potatoes cook for 15min.
Meanwhile, as the broth is simmering. Prep the vegetables. Add the juice of 1 lemon to the julienned beets and set aside.
To a skillet add 1T of olive oil and diced onion. Sweat over medium low heat until the onions are translucent. About 10 minutes.
Add the minced garlic and cook just until the raw smell is gone. About 1 minute.
Next add the grated tomato and season with 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of sugar.
Add carrots and continue to cook another 2 min stirring frequently to prevent browning.
Add beets and cook 4 more minutes. Be careful not to overcook the vegetables. They should still have a slight bite. .
Add beet greens and cabbage to the stock pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling add beet mixture and reduce to a simmer.
Crush 1 clove of garlic into a paste and add to pot. Add 1 large sprig of thyme and simmer an additional 20min.
To finish, season with salt, pepper, and sugar.
Turn off the heat. Sprinkle heavily with chopped parsley and dill. The entire top of the soup should be covered with a thin layer of herbs. Cover with lid and steep for 1 min.
Serve piping hot with a dollop of sour cream and a thick piece of dark dye bread rubbed with garlic.
Borsch is alway’s better the next day once it’s had a chance to steap.
Make sure you save some for left overs.
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