Food blogger Renata – about cold soup: how to prepare it to be very tasty and what not to serve to guests

– Until now, Lithuanians from Tula know one cold soup – šaltibarščius. There are not one and not three cold soup recipes on your website. Tell us how the new refreshing hot soup was born? How often is it eaten in your family?

– Even before the appearance of kefir and “classic” cold soups made from it, cold soups were made in Lithuanian kitchens. On that day, you can refresh yourself with water from a deep well, which remains pleasantly cool even on a hot day. Mowers are made a beggar or otherwise pinch, bigus – sweet water with a little sugar, in which the black bread, which has begun to bloom, is cut. In the summer, women or children would bring this soup to the people who were cutting the grass, and they would eat a bowl of it themselves.

There are also other cold soups – sour cream or sour milk, diluted with cold water and seasoned with various seasonal vegetables and herbs. My childhood summers were spent in Biržai, where we used to eat “white” šlibaršči. They are made without beets, with boiled sorrel, served with fresh potatoes, which are placed directly in the child’s hands. If there is no kefir in the store, they make cold cream from sour cream diluted in half with water.

Perhaps I still love this cold soup because of my childhood memories, but when I travel to foreign countries, especially southern or tropical regions, I find interesting cold soups on restaurant menus, which I enjoy. I was interested in the recipes and found that it is almost impossible to find kefir more than in Poland, where the soup is made from yogurt or, like gazpacho, from fresh mashed vegetables. What I do not find in people – avocado, mint, walnuts, olive oil, chili. And all the cold soup tastes have a distinctive, original, good taste.

At home, traditionally, the first štiliboršči is made in February and throughout the summer. In February, because of the desire to speed up the end of winter, and in the summer – to refresh.

– Are they suitable for eating not only in summer?

– Fits, fits really well. In the supermarket, we can find all the ingredients we need throughout the year, of course the taste of cucumbers bought in the winter cannot be compared to the ones we pick in the garden or in the greenhouse, so in the winter I try to make more interesting yogurt. cold soup instead of classic cold soup. I serve it with toast, add oil, pumpkin seeds, cranberries to the plate, then the soup is not only fresh, but also filling. And, by the way, I cook sweet soup in winter, also eaten cold.

In spring, you can add not only dill or onion leaves, but also the first scalded leaves of nettles, sorrel, young chives, fennel, and dandelion leaves. In a bowl, I mix herbs, Greek yogurt and water (proportion 1:1) with salt and we call this dish green ayran, which I only drink, but sometimes, if I’m waiting for guests, I pour it. on the plate, add boiled eggs, chopped walnuts, fresh dill and we eat like a cold soup.

And in the fall, I add chopped fresh tomatoes to the kefir mass and vegetables (without beets) – I discovered a wonderful new taste, like a summer tomato salad with sour cream.

Cold tomato soup

© Individual album

– You like to travel – maybe you should bring back a cold soup recipe from abroad?

– The more south, the greater the selection of cold soups, but I have always been more interested in the north. A few years ago, we visited some farms in Iceland, one of the farmers made Skyr type yogurt, so I asked if the locals use yogurt to make cold soup. Because it is rarely hot in Iceland, it is not necessary to lose food, but I am very happy that my recipes spread quickly in Icelandic homes, the cold soup recipe with white radish received the most praise, I replaced the radish with turnip, which grows with perfect on this harsh island.

– Maybe cold soup is served to foreigners – what is the reaction and assessment?

– I do not cook šaltiborščių with beetroot for foreigners, unless I already know the taste and the fact that the pink color of the soup and the slightly unusual salty taste of kefir will not scare you. I’ve seen unpleasant reactions, so I don’t recommend ordering it even in a restaurant. There is nothing worse than seeing a waiter bring you a dish you haven’t tasted.

I serve fresh tomato gazpacho to foreigners who visit our house – this cold soup is known and loved by almost everyone.

– What are the important rules for making cold soup?

– There are probably many houses with production methods. Some cut cucumbers into cubes, others grate, some use boiled beets, others just pickled. And everywhere there are pickled cucumbers, mustard, horseradish, capers, feta-type cheese, which many compatriots use to taste cold-brews. So, the most important thing, of course, is only one condition – the cold soup is available before delivery visit in the refrigerator for at least a few hours.

I always have dill in the freezer specifically for making cold soup – if you put a teaspoon on a plate, even a slightly warmed cold soup will become cold.

– What mistakes should not be made when creating?

– Many people are surprised when they see hot potatoes added to cold cuts, others don’t like eggs in soup, but it’s just a matter of taste. The one thing I don’t do and don’t recommend to others is to put ice cubes on the plate when serving. They do not dissolve for a long time, they dilute the thick soup unevenly, and when caught between the teeth, squeak unpleasantly.
Dill stalks are also not very suitable, only fresh leaves should be used.

White frost

White frost

© Individual album

– What is the secret of making cold soup that you can share?

– Many people wonder how to use less salt for salting cold soups. And I used to be less salty – I added a whole spoonful to 2 liters of soup, until I thought to treat the prepared vegetables and dill and onions first. After adding only one teaspoon of salt and mixing, cucumber releases juice, which, when mixed with kefir or yogurt, salt evenly in the soup.

Mint gives incredible freshness to cold soups – just a few finely chopped leaves will give you a pleasant aroma and pleasant sensation. I only use mint when making “white” cold soups, it doesn’t go well with beetroot.

I serve some cold soups with boiled fresh potatoes, sometimes I serve them cold so as not to contrast with cold soups. If the potatoes are young, cooked with the skin, it is very tasty and cold.

– Please rank your and your loved one’s favorite cold soup.

* Lombok with sorrel.
* Cold soup with white radish or turnip.
* Cold soup with spring greens and radishes.
* Green ayran.
* Classic cold.
* Gazpacho.
*Sweet soup.
* Cold soup of avocado, cucumber and green beans with mint.

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