This beet salad was one of the first Russian foods I tried when I came here in the U.S. to meet my husband’s side of the family. I fell in love with it just like so many Russian dishes. The salad is called “vinegret” in Russian and popularly called “vinaigrette” in the West. It’s basically made from boiled potatoes, carrots, pickled cucumbers, sauerkraut, chopped onions, and beans with sunflower or olive oil as dressing and seasoned with some salt.
My vinegret version doesn’t include onions, and I add green peas in addition to canned beans. Sometimes when I ran out of beans, I just use green peas and it still turns out tasty. I also prefer using olive oil instead of sunflower oil. This salad has a distinct flavor and very filling.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Yields: 10-12 servings
2 large red beets
4 medium russet potatoes
4-5 medium carrots
4-5 medium dill pickles
2 cups sauerkraut, drained
1 can green peas, drained
¼ cup sunflower oil or olive oil
Salt to taste
Tools You’ll Need:
2 cooking pots
1 small mixing bowl
1 large mixing bowl
1. Trim and wash beets and place in a smaller pot. Fill with water just to cover and boil until soft enough to pierce with a knife, about 45 minutes. Drain and let cool before peeling. 2. Wash potatoes and carrots and place together in a big pot. Fill with water just to cover and boil until soft enough to pierce with a knife but not overcooked, about 25-30 minutes. Drain and let cool before peeling.
3. Peel veggies and dice. Use a food dicer if you have it to make the task easier and faster.
4. In a small mixing bowl, place diced beets, add oil, and mix. This is done so the beets don’t bleed as much when mixed with the rest of the salad.
5. In a large mixing bowl, place diced potatoes and carrots, along with the drained sauerkraut and diced pickles.
6. Throw in the beets and season with salt according to taste.
7. Mix thoroughly and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving for much richer flavor.
8. Serve with chopped dill or just as it is.