Thursday, September 1, 2011

"I have just one thing to say: DELICIOUS!"

We are with my dear mother-in-law.  She is now in a coma and will likely pass away today from bone and breast cancer.  We are all feeling quite numb and are naturally in a state of disbelief that she is leaving.  This blog entry is a tribute to her and an attempt to honor her, for she is truly an incredible person who loves others with abundance. 

A week or so ago when we were here caring for her, her appetite returned.  She loves soup and so I made Russian Borscht for her.  This soup is special to me, because my daughter-in-law grew up in Russia until age 14.  When my mother-in-law ate a bite of this soup, she said, "I have just one thing to say:  DELICIOUS!"  It was a choice moment, because she lit up with joy over food, during a very difficult time when pain and nausea and the heaviness of the diagnosis were hanging over her.  She was excited enough that she told her neighbors and asked that I make more soup to share with others.  :)  Here is the recipe: 

Russian Borscht

2 cups gluten-free beef broth
4 cups water
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
3/4 cup diced carrots
2 bay leaves
3 beets
cooking oil
garlic salt
1/2 pound ground beef
1 egg
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
salt and pepper
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 teaspoon fresh or dried dill
sour cream

1.  Pour beef broth and water into a saucepan.  Add potatoes, carrots, and bay leaves and bring to a boil.

2.  Peel beets and slice them into long, thin pieces.  Saute beets in cooking oil and sprinkle them with garlic salt.

3.  Combine ground beef with egg and onion.  Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper and mix well.  Make small meatballs and add to vegetables in saucepan.

4.  Add cabbage and dill.  Boil until meat is completely cooked (about 10-15 minutes) and all vegetables are tender. 

5.  Add beets, then boil soup for an additional minute.  Remove bay leaves.  Serve soup with sour cream.

Serves 6 to 8

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