Summer Beet and Buttermilk Soup

It’s been so hot these past couple of days!  So humid, more precisely. My poor dog keeps hiding in dark corners, and I’ve been giving her frozen peas and carrots for snacks.

I hate cooking in this weather. I don’t eat out a lot, but when it’s this humid all I want to do is go sit in an air conditioned restaurant and order something that comes with a side of potato salad. Or if I am cooking just for myself, I will make a big bowl of potato salad and eat just that. Is that weird? Or gross? Or weird AND gross?

Anyway. This post has nothing to do with potato salad, except that potato salad is excellent hot weather food (ironically enough, given that mayo and hot sunny days don’t play well together), as is Lithuanian Cold Beet and Buttermilk soup. I made this last night, and because I was hungry and in a hurry I didn’t follow instructions perfectly, and so ended up making Cold Beet and Buttermilk soup inspired by a Lithuanian version. This is ridiculously easy to make (provided you’ve cooked certain ingredients ahead of time), and so perfect for hot days when you don’t want to cook.

Cold Beet and Buttermilk soup (serves 2-3)

2 cups buttermilk OR
1 cup milk, 1 cup yogourt, and 1 tbsp of lemon juice
2 medium sized beets, boiled and chilled
2 hard boiled eggs, cooled
½ cup chopped cucumber
2 tbsp chopped chives
Salt to taste

  1. If you don’t have buttermilk, then combine the milk, yogourt, and lemon juice together in a glass jar, mix well, and let it sit for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Peel and grate the beets and the eggs. Combine with the buttermilk and chopped cucumber and chives
  3. Salt to taste and garnish with fresh dill (or dried dill, if that’s what you have).

I made this without the cucumber and chives since I didn’t have them on hand, and it still tasted great. The recipes says to chop the egg whites finely, and mash the yolks together with the salt and chives before combining everything together, so you can opt to do that if you wish, instead of grating them as I had.  The recipe also called for sour cream and chilled, boiled water, but I skipped that (didn’t have the sour cream, and didn’t have the time to boil and then chill water).  In Lithuania they serve it with hot boiled potatoes on the side. I did not feel like turning on the stove for hot potatoes.

For the record- I’m not a cold soup fan, but despite that I think this is a great summer soup.  And super pretty to boot, so serve in clear glass bowls if you have them.

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