Finding myself now in British Columbia, I’m feeling the weight of travelling against the summer season, so that now being so far north crops like beets and turnips and strawberries are just now in full swing, while back home and farther south, they’ve been feasting on tomatoes and peppers already! Instead of giving way to feelings of envy, make the most of what you do have; yesterday that was a huge rhubarb patch and some leftover beets from market. Voila and yum = Beet Rhubarb Soup.
First take a good-sized bunch of beets, maybe even two, you want this soup to really be earthy and purple. Bake these guys for about 30 minutes somewhere around 375 degrees. Meanwhile, chop up a few rhubarb stalks (not more than 4 or 5, depending on the rhubarb:beet ratio) an onion and garlic (or garlic scapes if you have them!) Place all these, along with the beets in a pot and add some good spices (nice pairs include: mint, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, black pepper or thyme) I chose the ginger and cardamom, 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, 1/2 c. of red wine and set it to simmering until it’s reduced by about half.
Once it’s reduced, add about 4 cups of stock or water, a bay leaf and some salt and let it simmer for up to 4 hours, covered. Remove the bay leaf when you feel the flavors and scents have melded enough and transfer in batches to a food processor and puree until creamy.
A dollop of sour cream and some beet shavings would be a lovely garnish for this springtime, tart and earthy bowl of nourishment. Pair with a hearty crusty bread and enjoy as you like!