Recipe by George Gamber
"This Lithuanian family recipe from the old country makes an awesome summer soup!"
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beets, peeled and shredded
English cucumber - peeled, quartered, and sliced
fresh dill, minced
Having a surfeit of beets (which I love) I found this recipe several days ago and made it, substituting a few green onions for the chives, having been informed that they are a perfectly acceptable substitute by Baltic friends. I found it very bland, and then realized no salt was in the recipe. I found it needed 2 tsp. (adjust to taste), and a good grate of pepper. It still was nothing special. I refrigerated it for a day or so and, oh my(!), what a wonderful improvement. The dill became redolent in the soup. I added a squeeze of lemon and a spoon of sour cream and it was irresistible! So - when you first make it - remember - it does need the day or so in the refrigerator. It's on my keeper list!
this soup is delicious!! i enjoy eating it with a side of boiled potatoes, just like grandma served it!!
Few changes to make it taste like my grandmas:
1. Used pickled beets (regular, not the sweet kind) from the jar. It's much faster, adds nice flavor and you can eat it right away. I also added some juices from the can (about 1/4cup).
2. Add either some water or stock from boiling potatoes. Just until the soup is desired consistency. I added about a cup.
3. Fresh dill is very important, won't taste right with dried kind.
4. It needs a little salt (to taste).
5. Traditionally this soup is served with dill potatoes (boil potatoes, then lightly fry them in some oil and then sprinkle with dill, salt and pepper to taste.)
My great grandmother was from Russia and made this soup. It is called holodnik. I thought we were the only ones that ate this. The only thing different is that we added a few thinly sliced radishes and added ice cubes after it was all combined. It's excellent!!
The trick is to put dill, green onions (instead of chives) and salt into a glass bowl and crush/smash everything together with a wooden spoon, to get the flavors going (and you don't have to let it sit as long.) After a long, hot day working in the field, the body craves salt - electrolytes.
I like cutting everything into bite size (similar size) pieces.
Mix in the cucumber.
Then mix in the buttermilk.
Add beets and eggs.
Throw in some ice cubes to thin and chill the soup. It still needs to go into the fridge for a couple of hours.
Adjust salt & pepper. Throw in an ice cube or 2 in each bowl to thin or chill some more if needed.
Serving the soup with french fries on the side works well too.
I'm making it as I write...
Very good! It was kind of like gazpacho, but different, of course. I added salt and pepper. I also forgot the eggs. It is a lovely soup and draws a lot of attention in the lunch room due to the vibrant color - (don't wear white). I will make this again and next time I will remember the eggs. Thank you!
I crave this soup in the summer! Make sure you let it sit for a day in fridge before eating it. I also add some salt and pepper (to taste).
Simple, fast and tasty, just like my mother used to make and like in restaurants in Lithuania during the summer. Easier to use canned beets, and pickled beets taste better. Needs some salt.,
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Lithuanian Saltibarsciai (Cold Beet Soup)
Serving Size: 1/8 of a recipe
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat: 34
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