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Saturday, February 23, 2013

Guest Allen Andraski: Mom's Borscht

Seasonal Recipe of the Week
This week I had a lovely guest named Allen Andraski who has a passion for cooking, teaching and — from what I can tell — life in general. We spoke about some of the great food towns he has lived in (Detroit, Philadelphia, Portland) and about how he cooked with his Polish parents. He brought me the most delicious Borscht to try and it was made with pork, who knew? Here is the recipe, it's a great one! It's a big recipe, so feel free to make a fraction.

2 to 3 pounds pork shoulder, butt, or country ribs trimmed of fat
4 quarts water
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
3 bay leaves
2 to 3 bunches of beets, stems removed and washed well
1/2 cup flour
1 pint sour cream
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
10 to 12 boiled potatoes, cut into 1 inch cubes

Combine pork,water,peppercorns and bay leaves in a large pot.Bring to the boil and skim off surface scum as it occurs. Cover and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until pork is tender. Remove pork from water and let cool.Strain broth and return to sauce pan.Bring back to the boil and add whole beets, cover and simmer 1 hour. While that's cooking shred pork using your fingers into small pieces. Remove beets from liquid and cool, then shred on a coarse grater. Set aside. Mix flour with sour cream and slowly whisk into hot broth. Simmer for 30 minutes more.Now add shredded pork, beets, salt and vinegar. Take your soup bowls and add potatoes and then pour hot soup over them. Done!