Bayou Borscht Recipe

This recipe is a variation on the traditional Jewish hot beef and vegetable borscht. It has been enhanced by the addition of seasonings that are more typical of Creole cooking. It would be hard to imagine two cultures which are farther apart than these. Yet, the result is a much more exciting version of an old standard.


¼ cup vegetable oil
1 ½ cups chopped onions
1 ½ pounds of lean beef, cubed into
½ inch pieces
1 cup shredded potatoes
¼ cup cider vinegar
5 cups of beef stock
3 small bay leaves
1 cup shredded onions
3 cups shredded green cabbage
2 cups shredded carrots
2 cups shredded fresh turnips
2 cups shredded fresh beets
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
or pareve margarine
sour cream (optional)

About Rabbi Michael Sternfield

Michael Sternfield has been a Reform rabbi for 40 years, most recently serving at Chicago Sinai Congregation from 1995 until 2013. He served for 20 years as spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Israel in San Diego, and briefly as the leader of the Durban, South Africa Progressive Jewish Congregation during South Africa’s historic transition to multi-racial democracy. He is now based in Los Angeles, California.