Boyars' Shchi.

Shchi is another traditional Russian soup. Alongside with Borsch it was mentioned in Domostoi, a 17th century guide to the Russian household. The Boyars were ancient Russian nobility who usually had separate outbuilding 'povarnaya' where the food was prepared for the Boyar's household and guests. Cooking methods used in these kitchens were similar to ordinary households: the food was slowly cooked inside pech (an oven made of stone) in clay pots. Recipes, however, were more elaborated and ingredients more diverse and expensive.

In contrast with many other Shchi recipes, this recipe uses wild mushroom stock and requires a long cooking time

Ingredients:

40g of dried wild mushrooms or 200g of fresh wild mushrooms
500g of beef chuck or beef shin (or beef brisket )
2 onions
1 carrot
1/2 pasnip
350 g potatoes
500g of sauerkraut
30g of bacon fat
20 g parsley
30g of oil
1 clove of garlic, crushed and chopped
2 bay leaves
salt and pepper
30g of bacon fat
2 table spoons of tomato puree or 2 tomatoes

Instructions:

1.Soak the dried mushrooms in cold water for 2 hours. Simmer in a litre of water for 30-40 min.
2.Sieve the mushrooms, reserve the stock, chop and fry the mushrooms.

3.Chop the sauerkraut and add it to the mushroom stock. Simmer for about an hour.

4. Cut the beef on cubes, add salt and pepper and quickly fry in oil.

5.Cube carrots, chop onions and parsnips. Saute the vegetables in oil.

6.Peel the potatoes and cut into small (~1cm) cubes.

7. Add the sauteed vegetables, chopped parsley,the sauerkraut, garlic, the mushrooms, bay leaves, potatoes and beef to the mushroom stock and cook for about one and a half hours over a low heat or add all the ingredients to a slow cooker and cook for about two and a half hours .

More recipes are coming!

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