Sunday, 7 October 2012

Chilled beetroot, berry and honey soup

Chilled beetroot, berry and honey soup

Summer is officially here in beautiful South Africa (you may recall my enthusiastic moaning about the Lowveld heat), and goodness but it's lovely. Skies are an impossible blue, trees lush with greenery, and my little potplant family is thriving in a delightful manner.

Meet the gang (clockwise from top left): Manuel, Miss Lavendar, Fawlty, The Piglets, Miss Bornstein and Big Hettie
Rooms spent the weekend up to her elbows in soil as she added some proper herbs to our patio.

Our new friends: Chives, basil, french parsley, thyme and parsley. Thanks Rooms!
All this summer-ness has given me a craving for something colourful and bright. I was about to pop out for a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, that most rainbow-ey of cocktails, when I remembered spotting a beet recipe in the latest issue of the Taste magazine.

Pan Galactic Gargle Blasters, the happiest cocktail in the world.
[Image source:]
Now don't ask me why this recipe stuck with me, I do not like beetroot at all, but something about the rich depth of the colours in the picture made me decide that I was going to try it. Thankfully Rooms and I were on our way to a Farmer's Market, so I bought some beetroot for the first time in my life and got cooking.

The end result has officially converted me to the beetroot camp. The colour is utterly bewitching, you could stare at it for hours, and the taste is a sublime blend of sweet and sour and earthiness. Don't expect a savoury soup, don't expect a sweet one. Just close your eyes and enjoy.

I mean, just look at that colour. I want to dress myself in this soup.
The original recipe called for a peach to be added, which isn't in season so I just left it out, and normal cream, which I substituted with cottage cheese because, well, I'm a dietitian. I'm rather pleased I did - the unassuming cottage cheese stabilized the intensity, the sweetness of the beetroot; whereas I feel full cream may have made it a bit too much to handle.


It could give about four 1-cup servings, but I was hungry, so it only stretched to three.


Ingredients for beetroot, berry and honey soup
  1. 350g beetroot (or 1 large-ish beetroot if you don't have a scale)
  2. 250mL (1 cup) berry juice 
  3. 250mL (1 cup) orange juice (I didn't have orange juice so I squeezed some ancient oranges from the bottom of our fruit basket instead)
  4. 1 apple, roughly chopped
  5. 125mL (1/2 cup) low fat smooth cottage cheese
  6. 5mL (1 tsp) honey
  7. 50mL lemon juice
  1. Chop the beetroot into uniform pieces and boil until soft.
  2. Remove the beetroot and allow to cool before peeling. Once cooked, this is as easy as removing the skin from an onion.
  3. Blend the beetroot with all all the other ingredients.
  4. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  5. Add a generous dollop of smooth cottage cheese and some basil leaves (I picked mine from Fawlty, my perennial basil bush). You could add some apple slices if you feel like something to chew - this soup does not pair well with bread.
Kilojoules/serving with garnish: Approx 610kJ (if 4 portions) or 810kJ (if 3 portions)

Such a pretty dinner

Add apples for some crunch

I'm really chuffed that I finally found a way to enjoy this nutrient-laden veggie. The problem is, now I have 3 more beetroot to use and I have no idea what to do with them. Any ideas?


  1. For the third time!!
    Beetroot salad - sliced onions + dressing
    Beetroot pudding - Noreen's - delish
    Beetroot chocolate cake - yes! and they say it is delish too.
    The colour is superb, one can gaze for hours and drink it in
    I like the apples to add a tang and substance to the soup. Well thought of. I think you are an amazing Dietician and an amazing Blogger of note. You will go far my Girl.

  2. Haha thanks moex! In light of my pending Cape Town trip I think I'll avoid cake and pudding, especially because I'll probably eat it all myself. Am thinking beet chips? Will try the salad with the last beet:)


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