MeHi.  My name is Mark and this is my cooking blog.

I get asked a lot for my recipes, so I decided to start this cooking blog.  What you’ll find here will be my recipes and my variations on others’ recipes, my cooking tips and who knows what else. 

I should say up front that I’m lactose intolerant (check out my lactose intolerance site and I also try to live a low-carb lifestyle.  So the recipes you’ll find here will generally be devoid of milk and milk products and try, wherever possible, to be low in carbs.

I hope you enjoy the site and the recipes.


Main Dishes&Soups18 Aug 2008 06:23 am

This is my recipe for Sweet and Sour Cabbage Borscht, aka Cabbage Soup.  It’s my most requested recipe.  Even though it’s called “borscht” there are no beets in it.  It is based on my mother’s recipe which I’ve modified.  I make it in the slow cooker, my mother made it on the stovetop.  It can be a side dish or a full one-pot meal.

Sweet and Sour Cabbage Borscht

1 Small to Med head of green cabbage – cored and sliced into 12ths or so.
1 14.5 oz Can Stewed Tomatoes
1 14.5 oz Can Tomato Sauce
1 Cup Beef Broth (or 1 cup mushroom water or 1 cup water if adding beef)
1 Medium Yellow Onion – halved and sliced into 8ths or so and split apart
1 tsp sour salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt (use 2 tsp if no beef broth)
2 tbs sugar (Splenda works fine if you don’t want the carbs from the sugar)
1-1.5 lbs lean stew meat (optional)

Mix all the ingredients except the cabbage in the crockpot – then add the cabbage. The cabbage will be sticking up out of the liquid but it will cook down. Cook for 8-10 hours on medium heat – if possible, stir the cabbage about half way through the cooking, otherwise stir when you get home.

If you use beef, this becomes a one-pot meal. There is no need to pre-cook or brown the meat. If you’re making the standard version without beef, use beef broth. If you’re using beef then you don’t need the broth, just use water and up the salt to 2 tsp. If making a vegetarian version, use 1 cup of mushroom water (the water from rehydrating shitake mushrooms) instead of the beef broth and 2 tsp of salt instead of one. If you don’t have mushroom water you can use Vegetarian Mushroom Oyster Sauce – use about 2 tbs in one cup of water and cut the salt back to 1 tsp. You can get this at an Asian Grocery.

Use Better than Bullion brand of beef broth concentrate to make the beef broth.

Sour salt is citric acid crystals. You can get this in the kosher food section of a good market. Look for Rokeach brand in a 5 oz glass jar. Some health food stores carry it in bulk as will a winemaking or homebrew shop.

Can be made up and put in the crockpot the night before. Put the pot in the fridge – take out in the morning and start heating.

You can optionally add in carrots and/or potatoes.

For the beef I usually use cross-rib roast but any cut will come out fork-tender.

6 Responses

  1. asian sweetpea Says:

    This is now one of my favorites !!! The flavors all blend nicely… works well together….. I can’t believe I ate the whole thing ….it was so yummy I will definitely be making this one again and again 🙂

  2. Dave Says:

    Mark, what size can tomatoes and paste??


    14.5 oz can – note that it’s tomato sauce, not paste.

    (I have modified the recipe to show the can size)

  3. Jerry Says:

    I have made a sweet and sour cabbage borscht from my mom’s recipe for 30 years now. Bone in beef short ribs work great but must be trimmed and refrigerated and then skim the fat off the top. I use much more sugar but again I make enough for freezing and 15 people. Huge pot and I use 2 cups of sugar minimum 5 large cans of 2 each stewed tomatoes and 3 each whole tomatoes with juice and 2 cut up chuck roasts or many pounds of short ribs (loads of meat). Throw it all in the pot for as long as you can but add cabbage last. This is a meal in itself with the meat.

  4. Mark Says:

    I have been making this for years. My family calls it “four-bowls soup” because the first time my wife tasted it, she liked it so much that she ate four bowls.

  5. Alyssa Katz Says:

    Hi Mark,

    I just found this recipe and I am looking forward to trying it! I have a question for you. My crock pot only has a low and high setting. What would you recommend? I was thinking cook on low maybe for 10-12 hours?


    Yes, the low setting will work fine. Time depends on your cooker, but 8 hours should be fine.

  6. Robert Says:

    Thank you, Mark.
    Excellent recipe but next time I would omit the pepper entirely. I like spicy but this was just too much.

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