I’m gonna start this post off by saying: My swirling skills aren’t as strong as they should be. For someone who’s been cooking since they were 5 and has worked at a handful of restaurants making latte art, my swirling skills are just despicable. But, in my defense, the sometimes-inconsistent nature of Kefir made it difficult to get the perfect spiral.
Beets can be a tough sell. When someone doesn’t like them, usually they really don’t like them. If you’re one of those people I highly recommend trying them again. In my opinion, beets are like brussel sprouts: you just have to prepare them right. The red beets at the store looked so fresh and perfect this week that I just had to get them. As long as you have a blender (a food processor works too) this dish is so quick and easy to make and seriously satisfied my craving for a bowl of borscht from Veselka.
I was actually surprised when I reached the end of this recipe and realized the soup didn’t need to be chilled. It’s actually supposed to be served hot, although I’m sure serving it cold would be just as tasty.
Beet + Fennel Soup with Kefir
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped fennel bulb
1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds
2 large (2 1/2-3 inch-diameter-I used twice as many, half the size) beets, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 cup unflavored kefir
Fennel fronds (for garnish)
Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped onion, chopped fennel, and fennel seeds. Sauté until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add cubed beets and stir to coat. Add chicken broth and bring to boil. Cover; reduce heat to medium-low. Cook until beets are tender, 18 to 20 minutes.
Puree soup in batches in blender. Return to same saucepan. Whisk in 1 cup unflavored kefir and season soup with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Rewarm soup.
Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle with additional unflavored kefir; garnish with fennel fronds.