This year spring arrived here much earlier than usual. And that’s marvellous because we have had the opportunity to enjoy the greenery and the fantastic looking and smelling blooms for a long while now. But beauty everywhere is not the only advantage of this wonderful season.
Another one is a growing variety of seasonal fruit and vegetables appearing on market stalls. I have already been taking advantage of asparagus and enjoying it in different forms. Additionally, the first, real strawberries are also available.
Another vegetable associated with spring is young beetroot. In Poland, we use it whole (baby beets with beet leaves (called botwina)) to prepare a soup called chłodnik (chlodnik). We serve this refreshing dish cold, so it is perfect for hot spring or summer days. To make this Cold Beet Soup, you will also need some other spring vegetables (cucumber, radish, chives) as well as kefir (you can replace it with buttermilk).
Kefir is a fermented milk drink that contains nutrients similar to those present in milk. However, the fermentation process leaves in it very little lactose. It means that even people with lactose intolerance, in general, can drink it*. There are also vast amounts of probiotic bacteria found in kefir. All of it makes it a very healthy drink that:
All advantages of kefir combined with the health benefits of beets (I have written about them here), make this soup very healthy. But obviously, I wouldn’t include it on my blog if it wasn’t delicious!
Chlodnik tastes great served with a boiled egg. However, if you would like to have a more substantial but still light lunch, you can have it with some new potatoes served with dill and a bit of butter. But if you are still not convinced about the substance of the Cold Beet Soup you have to appreciate the look. A pink soup (as well as pink pancakes) will surely make your day brighter!
*Amounts of live bacteria present in kefir differ between various brands. People with lactose intolerance can only drink kefir with a very high number of those bacteria.