A summer staple, Polish chlodnik is a refreshing cold beet soup with a vibrant pink color. It’s flavored with cucumbers, radishes, plain yogurt and topped with hard-boiled eggs, making it a truly healthy and delicious meal.
This chilled Polish soup is perfect to cool off with this summer, and the colour is a lovely burst of freshness! Although it is said to have originated in Lithuania and then made its way to Poland, Chlodnik now serves as a very integral part of the Polish culinary repertoire. The hot version – called barszcz – is a great option too, if you’re looking to fix a nasty cold!
3 medium beetroots, trimmed, peeled and chopped
1 medium potato, peeled and chopped
2 cups vegetable stock
1 small cucumber, coarsely chopped
2 small spring onion bulbs, coarsely chopped
1 cup yoghurt
½ lemon, juiced
Salt and white pepper, to season
¼ cup creme fraiche
1 ½ tbsp finely-chopped chives
1-cm piece fresh horseradish (or use fresh ginger)
1. Place the beetroot and potato cubes in a pan with the stock. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Remove from the heat and cool.
2. Refrigerate until chilled.
3. Place the mixture in a blender. Add the coarsely chopped cucumber, spring onions and yoghurt. Puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt, pepper and lemon juice.
4. Ladle into bowls, top with a dollop of creme fraiche and the chopped chives. Grate a little horseradish (or ginger, if using) over, and serve immediately.