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Polish Chilled Beet Soup (Chlodnik)
Chlodnik translates from the Polish as “a little cold something” or “the cooler.” It's a go-to during the muggy summer months in Poland, where the soup is popular in restaurants and homes alike. We start by cooking raw beets and later add pickled beets for a quick and easy hit of sweetness and acidity that adds another layer of flavor. To offset the earthy beet flavor and striking deep-purple hue, we garnished the soup with a mix of shredded radishes and cucumber—which we salted, for firmer texture—as well as pickled beets, dill and lemon juice. Pureed with ice, the soup can be on the table in about an hour, but it also can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to a day before serving. The flavor improves as it sits.
pounds red beets, peeled and thinly sliced
cup cider vinegar
01In a large pot over medium-high, bring 2 quarts water, the beets, vinegar, 2 tablespoons salt and ½ teaspoon pepper to a boil. Cook, adjusting the heat to maintain a vigorous simmer, until the beets are tender, 30 to 60 minutes (timing depends on the thickness of the slices and age of the beets). Remove from the heat and let cool for 15 minutes.
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