But what makes borş different from any other vegetable soup?
I asked it to someone who told me it is soup made from beets, but I was not satisfied with this answer as I also had borş without beets. Therefore I asked it also to the students I give English conversation classes to, and they referred to some kind of sour ingredient: Tărâța? Unfortunately there English vocabulary didn't include that word. So, time for some research on the internet, starting with Wikipedia.
What's in the name?
The first thing I found is that the soup doesn’t originate from Moldova, but from the Ukraine (as the Varenyky). Still it is very popular in Moldova and many other Eastern and Central European countries.
It often has beets as the main ingredient and the soup has a cold and warm variant, both with beets as its mean ingredient, but it is prepared in different ways.
In Romania however borş is the name for any soup with a special sour flavor, usually prepared with: borş! Borş is another name for tărâța, bran in English). There are many ways of preparing this borş: a time consuming but probably delicious recipe from a Romanian grandmother or more simple ones using packs of borş powder. I choose for the last option. I also choose to make it with beets as did is indeed the most common ingredient, as potatoes, carrots and dill. See the recipe below.
Borş with borş
2 spoons of oil
3 beets, peeled and cut in large chunks
3 medium-sized carrots, peeled and cut in large chunks
3 potatoes, peeled and cut in large chuncks
¼ of white cabbage, shopped or grated
1.5 liter boullion
2 desert spoons of bran/ or borş of a pack
Fry the onions shortly in the oil.
Add the beets, carrots and potatoes and fry shortly as well
Add the boullion and the bran and let it simmer until the vegetables are almost done
Add the cabage and cook another 15 minutes
Add pepper, salt and pepper
In Moldovan style, serve it with:
Smintana (sour cream) and rye bread
You can get the sour taste as well by adding lemon juice instead of bran.
Borsh avec borş
2 cuillères à soupe d'huile
3 betteraves, pelées et coupées en gros morceaux
3 carottes moyennes, pelées et coupées en gros morceaux
3 pommes de terre, épluchées et coupées en gros morceaux
¼ de chou blanc, émincé ou râpé
1,5 litre de bouillon
Faire brièvement revenir les oignons dans l'huile.
Ajouter les betteraves, les carottes et les pommes de terre et les faire frire peu de temps.
Ajouter le bouillon et le son et laisser mijoter jusqu'à ce que les légumes soient presque cuits.
Ajouter le chou et cuire encore 15 minutes.
De la smintana (crème aigre) et du pain de seigle.
Vous pouvez également obtenir un goût amer en ajoutant du jus de citron à la place du son.