I checked out this beautiful recipe from Irina at http://www.russian-recipes.net. My couchsurfing host in Narva, Estonia (a predominantly Russian city) very kindly made it for me while I was staying with her. Personally, I prefer it without the sauerkraut, but it can be had both ways and is delicious! Don’t forget to add the sour cream!

Shchi Recipe Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds of beef (brisket or flank)
  • 1/2 pound of ham
  • 1/2 pound of broth veg. (carrots, leek and parsley)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of dried mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 3 Bay leaves
  • 1 dozen black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 pound of sauerkraut
  • 2 tablespoons of bacon fat
  • 1 cup of sour cream

Shchi Recipe Instructions:

Prepare a broth using the beef, ham, broth veg. and about 1 1/2 quarts of water, add salt to season.

Soak the dried mushrooms, rinse, simmer for about 10 minutes and then strain.

Squeeze the Sauerkraut, keeping the juice, then blanch in boiling water, drain and chop.

Saute the onion lightly in butter before adding the sauerkraut and cooking for a further 15 minutes. Use the peppersorn and bay leaves to season.

Add the broth and simmer for about 1 hour until the Sauerkraut is tender.

Mis 1 tablespoon of mushroom broth and the flour and add them to the soup to thicken, then bring to boil and simmer for another 5 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper, adding extra sauerkraut juice if the mix is not sour/sharp enough for taste.

Chop the mushrooms and then add the mushrroms, beef and chopped ham to the soup, then cook for another 10 minutes.

Serve with sour cream.

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