During winter at Global Youth Village international summer program, our campus is  quiet and we are very busy planning for another great summer experience. A fun winter activity is making a hearty soup and we have a simple recipe we want to share. In keeping in line with GYV tradition, the winter rhapsody soup is vegetarian!

No one expects beet soup to possess a touch of magic. But this kettle boasts of sorcery with its rich, compelling flavors and impressive appearance. While most beet soups are a dull shade of burgundy, this one is almost alive with its brilliant magenta color. Prepare the soup a day ahead, and the flavors will blossom.

For a dazzling presentation, bring the soup to the table in a tureen along with some dill weed for extra garnish, and serve it in white or ivory-colored bowls.

WINTER RHAPSODY SOUP

Yield: 8 servings

  • 2 pounds (1 kilo) or 3 to 4 medium beets, peeled and cut into eighths
  • 4 cups (1 liter) water 1 1/2 pounds (680g) or 3 large Russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into large chunks* 
3 1/2 cups (840 ml) water 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
2 large onions, cut into eighths 
1 pound (450g) carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks 
1/2 cup (120 ml) water 
1/4 cup (60 ml) plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice 
1/3 cup (80 ml) minced fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill weed 
1 1/4 teaspoons salt 
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  1. Place the beets in a 4-quart (4 liter) saucepan with the 4 cups (1 liter) water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn the heat down to medium and simmer about 20 to 25 minutes or until the beets are fork tender.
  2. Combine the potatoes, water, and salt in a 3-quart (3 liter) saucepan, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn the heat down to medium, and cook about 6 to 10 minutes, or until they are fork tender.
  3. Put the onions and carrots into a food processor and pulse-chop until they are finely diced. Transfer them to a large skillet or wok and add the 1/2 cup (120 ml) water. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, for about 5 to 6 minutes, or until they are just tender, adding small amounts of water, if needed. Set aside.
  4. Have a large stockpot ready. In batches, transfer the cooked beets and all their cooking liquid to the blender and puree until smooth. Return the pureed beets to the stockpot.
  5. Puree the potatoes and their cooking liquid in the blender and add them to the stockpot.
  6. Reserve 3/4 cup (180 ml) of the cooked carrot and onion mixture for garnish. Puree the remaining cooked carrots and onions, adding a small amount of water, if needed, and add it to the stockpot.
  7. Add the lemon juice, dill, salt, and pepper to the stockpot and simmer about 5 to 10 minutes to blend the flavors. Garnish each bowl with a spoonful of the reserved carrot and onion mixture and sprinkle with a smattering of chopped parsley.

*We specify Russet potatoes because they have an ideal toothy texture that gives this soup its special body.

NOTE: If the soup is too thick, thin it to your desired consistency with water and adjust the salt and lemon juice measurements.

From www.vegparadise.com