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Easter "Barszcz"

Wielkanocny Barszcz

1/2 lb piece smoked bacon
1 strip pork spareribs
2 qts water, to cover meat
2 onions, cut-up and browned in 1 tbsp butter
4 carrots, scraped and cut-up
1 celery stalk, cut-up
1 bay leaf
2 springs parsley
1 tbsp salt

Bring the meat and water to a boil. Boil until scum gathers on top. Remove from heat and skim. Return to heat, add vegetables and salt. Simmer for about 2 hours or until the meat is tender. Cool, Remove meat and strain broth.

NOTE: If stock is made earlier, it can be refrigerated and frozen. The fat solidifies and can easily be removed.

2 quarts stock
2 cups sour cream
2 or 3 tbsps freshly grated horseradish or prepared horseradish
2 or 3 tbsps vinegar
Salt to taste

Heat stock. Beat cream until smooth. Add a little hot stock to cream, stirring constantly. Add cream to broth, add horseradish and vinegar. Stir. Season to taste. Sourness depends on individual taste. Originally, zur, the sour liquid from fermented rye bread was used. This can be obtained prepared and bottled. However, it is more convenient to use 1 or 2 tbsps of lemon juice or vinegar. Another method to make barszcz sour is to use citric acid (sour salt) or juice from dill pickles.

To Serve Barszcz:
For each serving, place in a large soup bowl, diced boiled meat, sliced kielbasa, sliced hard-boiling egg, grated fresh horseradish, cubed dried cottage cheese. Pour hot barszcz over this mixture. Serve with rye bread.

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