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Bountiful Natural Treasures of Health - Eats And Treats By Tania Rebello

Eats And Treats By Tania Rebello

Nature has gifted us with the best resources that benefit our lives. Isn’t it interesting that fruits and vegetables are grown during a specific time of the year and have a purpose? They are created to help us get through each season. That is why they are called seasonal fruits and vegetables.

For instance, melons grow during the summer, while citrus fruits grow in the winter. Melons are rich in water content, making them perfect for hydration. Similarly, citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C, which contributes to a boost in immunity.

Pomegranates serve the same purpose. Root vegetables such as radish, sweet potatoes, and beetroots are at their prime during winter, and these vegetables give warmth to the body as they are high in carbohydrates. Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, chard, kale and methi are harvested in winter.

They are rich in Vitamin C as well. A combination of seasonal winter vegetables and animal protein is ideal for dealing with the upcoming cool weather as they keep the body warm and protect us from sicknesses and diseases.

Incorporate spices such as pepper, turmeric, red chilli, and ginger to reduce inflammation and destroy bacteria and viruses, leading to a healthier body. It is always helpful to eat seasonally. So, this winter, have that orange or lemon juice, gleefully accept a portion of roasted root vegetables, and enjoy them with some meat.

One dish that skilfully incorporates many winter ingredients is Borscht. Borscht Recipe Instructions Borscht is originally Ukrainian but is quite common in Russia and Poland too. In Ukraine, borscht symbolizes a strong family. I find this very interesting because not only does this dish bring a family together, it also strengthens the body and therefore the family.

All the ingredients are cooked in a clay pot where flavours mingle resulting in a wholesome, rich, hearty, and gorgeous borscht. In the past, borscht was eaten almost every day, served on holidays and at special occasions. Try this winter[1]friendly recipe for borscht

Borscht Recipe


• 500 gms boneless Beef: sirloin or stew meat

• 14 cups cold water

• 1 Tbsp salt + more to taste

• 2 large or 3 medium beets, washed, peeled and grated

• 4 Tbsp olive oil

• 1 Tbsp vinegar

• 1 Tbsp sugar

• 2 Tbsp tomato sauce, or paste (or 3 Tbsp ketchup)

• 1 Tbsp unsalted butter

• 1 medium onion, finely diced

• 2 carrots, grated

• 2 large or 3 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced into bite-sized pieces

• 1/2 head of small cabbage, sliced

• 2 tomatoes, peeled and diced

• 2 bay leaves

• 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

• 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley + more for garnish

• 2 cloves garlic, pressed

• Garnish: Sour cream and fresh sprigs of parsley or dill.


• Wash meat in cold water, cut into 1” pieces and place in a large soup pot with cold water and 1 Tbsp salt. Bring it to a boil and remove the foam as soon as it boils.

• Reduce heat, partially cover and simmer 45 minutes - 1 hr, periodically skimming off any foam that rises to the top.

• Grate beets on the large grater holes. Place them in a large heavy-bottom skillet with olive oil and vinegar and saute for 5 minutes, then reduce heat to med/low and add sugar and tomato sauce.

• Mix thoroughly and saute while stirring occasionally (about 10 min). Remove from pan and set aside.

• In the same skillet, sauté onion in butter for 2 min.

• Add grated carrot and sauté another 5 min or until softened, adding more oil if it seems too dry.

• Once the meat has been cooking at least 45 min, place sliced potatoes into the soup pot and cook 10 min, then add cabbage, sautéed beets, onion & carrot, and chopped tomatoes.

• Cook another 10 minutes or until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork.

• Add 2 bay leaves, 1/4 tsp pepper, and salt to taste if required.

• Chop parsley and press the garlic then stir them into the soup pot, immediately cover and remove from heat. Let the pot rest covered for 20 minutes for the flavors to meld before serving with a dollop of sour cream and a garnish of dill.