Golden Beet & Buttermilk Soup

This recipe courtesy of Eating Local: The Cookbook Inspired by America’s Farmers by Sur La Table with Janet Fletcher

Serves 4
This is one of the easiest soups imaginable and so inviting on a hot day. Made with golden beets, it is the color of lemon custard. Made with red beets, it is shocking pink, like borscht. The soup can be made up to a couple of days ahead.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound golden beets (weight without greens, about 3 medium beets)
  • 1 large clove garlic, sliced
  • 3 cups buttermilk
  • 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh chives, or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus more finely chopped for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or white wine vinegar, or more to taste
  • Kosher or sea salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF. If the beet greens are attached, remove all but 1⁄2 inch of the stem. Reserve the greens and stems for another use (page 31). Put the beets in a baking dish, and add water to a depth of 1⁄4 inch. Cover tightly and bake until a knife pierces them easily, 45 to 55 minutes. When cool enough to handle, peel the beets.
  2. Cut the beets into quarters. Put the beets, garlic, and 11⁄2 cups of the buttermilk in a blender and puree until smooth. (You can use a food processor but the results will not be as smooth.) Add the remaining 11⁄2 cups buttermilk, the dill, and the vinegar and puree again. Season to taste with salt. Transfer to a covered container and chill well.
  3. Taste before serving and adjust the seasoning. Serve in cups or bowls, garnishing each portion with a sprinkle of the chives.

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