Borscht is a beet soup of Ukrainian origin common in Eastern Europe and Northern Asia. It is typically made with beets as the primary ingredient by combining meat or bone stock with sautéed or boiled vegetables, which may include cabbage, carrots, onions, potatoes and tomatoes. Depending on the recipe, borscht may vastly vary in thickness.
A pot of borscht, however, may be cooked with meat, or with its bouillon or neither.
Borscht is normally served with smetana or sour cream, hard-boiled eggs or potatoes, but there is an ample choice of more garnishes and side dishes involved.
Borscht's popularity has spread throughout Eastern Europe and the former Russian Empire, and – by way of migration – to other continents. In North America, borscht is often linked with either Jews or Mennonites, the groups who first brought it there from Europe. Several ethnic groups claim borscht, in its various local guises, as their own national dish consumed as part of ritual meals within Eastern Orthodox, Greek Catholic, Roman Catholic, and Jewish religious traditions. Red borscht is a staple in Ukrainian cuisine; along with halushkas it became a symbol of Ukrainian national cuisine.
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