If you see someone eating Chlodnik, the color will get your attention. It’s a bright, vibrant pink from the combination of beets and dairy. The color isn’t one that you usually find in food, certainly not in savory.
Like Polish housewives everywhere, I tried my hand at this soup last summer, but I’ll be making this version from now on; it’s quick and easy, and ever so fresh tasting. Gosia not only shared her recipe, but she also invited several of us to her home for a day of traditional Polish cooking. Memories that I’ll always treasure.
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A colorful, healthy, cold soup for summer
- 4 or 5 young, tender beets, with tops if possible
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cucumbers, peeled and grated
- 6 radishes, grated
- 3 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
- 2 green onions (white and green parts), chopped
- 4 cups plain yogurt
- 4 cups kefir or buttermilk
- 1 cup sour cream
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 3 hard boiled eggs, quartered
- Prepare the beets by removing and dicing the stems up to the leaves
- Add the chopped stems to a large soup pot
- Peel and grate the remaining beet roots, add to the pan
- Add enough water just to cover the beets, add salt
- Simmer until tender, about 15 minutes
- Cool the beet mixture
- Add the cucumbers, radishes, dill, green onions, yogurt, kefir, and sour cream.
- Season with salt and pepper
- Chill and serve garnished with hard boiled egg
Now that I know the proper way to make this, I usually substitute two jars of grated beets for the whole beets, and simply combine all of the ingredients and chill – 10 minutes max prep time.
An accountant by trade and a food blogger since 2009, Lois Britton fell in love with Polish cuisine during the years she lived in Poznań, Poland. As the creator of PolishHousewife.com, she connects readers with traditional Polish recipes. Lois has a graduate certificate in Food Writing and Photography from the USF. She is the author of The Polish Housewife Cookbook, available on Amazon and on her website.