Cooking with One Chef One Critic

Canada has a large Ukrainian community, and borscht is part of their heritage. My first borscht experience was in a tiny Eastern European restaurant in Montreal, not far from McGill University. I’ll always remember that first spoonful of borscht. It was a very cold day and the taste of the soup, prepared by the kind-faced, elderly woman proprietor, made me feel warm and satisfied. The flavours of cabbage, beef, and beet make a beautiful combination.

  • Yield: 10 Servings


  • 3 lb (1.36 kg) stewing beef, cubed
  • 12 cups (3 L) water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 12 small beets, scrubbed but unpeeled, diced
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 small cabbage, cored and diced
  • 1 lb (454 g) tomatoes, cubed
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) sugar
  • sour cream for garnish
How to Make It
  1. Place beef, water, salt, pepper, and bay leaf in heavy soup pot and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Add beets and simmer 1 more hour. Add carrots, celery, potato, onion, cabbage, and tomatoes.
  2. Simmer 1 more hour. Stir in lemon juice and sugar. Adjust seasoning and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve in bowls with dollop of sour cream on top.

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