Russian Cabbage Soup (Schi)

An Authentic Cabbage Soup with "Sauerkraut"

Here I introduce to you a traditional Russian cabbage soup - not really a typical Cabbage Soup Version for the Diet Week. But me - as a cabbage lover - cook it from time to time for my family - especially in winter - and it's delicious!

thousand year old history

Cabbage soup has been a staple in Russian cuisine for more than thousand years. This soup - also called Schi - was cooked in all social groups and they used almost the same recipes. There exist numerous varieties - seasonal and regional.

Cooking Technique

Everyone used almost the same cooking technique, using a very particular Russian hearth. The soup is cooked not on top but within the hearth. The hearth has a a brick arch on top and a special door closing the arch's interieur. The fire was lighted one time in a day, but the thick brick walls kept the heat for up one day and night. By this the pots inside were warm even a day after the cooking, allowing a cooking that comes close to crockpot coooking. This technique has proved to be a healthy one because it accepts minimal heating time and preserves the nutrients.

Russian Authentic Cabbage Soup Recipe

Below is a classic example of a Russian cabbage soup "Schi," called the "Full Schi," which means that it includes the full set of ingredients.

For those concerned about carbohydrate intake, this recipe provides less than 16 g carbohydrate in a 1.5 cup serving.

Russian cabbage Soup Ingredients:
1 1/2lb. sauerkraut
1 1/2lb. beef
3 oz dried mushrooms
1/2 carrot, shredded
1 potato, cubed
1/2c celery root, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1/2 c celery stalk and leaf, chopped
1 tsp dill herb >br> 3 bay leaves
4 cloves garlic, diced
1 tsp heavy cream
1 tsp sunflower oil
1/2 c sour cream
7 peppercorns, whole
1 tsp dried marjoram

Boil the beef with carrots, celery and half of the onions, in 2 liters of water for 2 hours. After 1 hour, add salt to taste. Drain the beef, then cut it into 1-inch cubes, while reserving the broth. 

Pour 1 liter boiling water in a big ovenproof bowl over the sauerkraut, add the hard cream and the oil. Cover the bowl and put it in the oven at medium heat for half an hour, or until the sauerkraut is tender. Place the potatoes and mushrooms into a saucepan; add 2 cups cold water and boil until the potatoes and mushrooms are tender. Take the mushrooms and cut them into thin strips. Mix all cooked ingredients with the broth. Add salt and boil for 20 minutes more. Put aside, cover with a thick cloth and let set for another 20 minutes.

If wished, add pickled mushrooms to each serving. Serve with beef, garlic , sour cream and fresh finely chopped dill.
What a great taste!

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