Slavic folks love dried mushrooms, sauerkraut, potatoes, dill, and soups. This recipe took inspiration from Machanka, a meatless Slovak soup that’s popular during Catholic Lent season. It also took some inspiration from the general Slovak recipe canon. I tried to think back to my granny’s favorite things—pork products, potatoes, and the ability to make something out of very little. While this is not an authentic recipe, it utilizes Slavic flavors. In the end, it’s a soup that is hearty, savory, sour, totally vegan, and delicious.
Vegan Slavic Sauerkraut Soup
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
½ cup carrot, chopped
2 medium Russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
½ tsp dried dill weed
⅛ tsp caraway seed
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 cup sauerkraut, drained of brine (I used Bubbies, but you can use your favorite plain sauerkraut)
1 tsp bouillon paste (fake chicken or vegetable)
3 ½ cups vegan unsweetened milk (I used Good Karma Unsweetened Flaxmilk, but any vegan unsweetened milk will work!)
¼ cup dried porcini mushrooms, broken into small pieces and rinsed to remove any dirt or sand
1-2 Tbsp lemon juice
Salt, to taste
1. In a dutch oven or large, heavy pot, add olive oil, garlic and onions, and sauté over medium heat for ~7 minutes or until golden. Stir in carrots, potatoes, dill, caraway seeds, smoked paprika, and sauerkraut. Sauté for another 5 minutes over medium heat; stirring every now and then.
2. Stir in bouillon, vegan unsweetened milk, and dried porcini mushrooms. Bring to a boil, turn the heat down to low, and cover. Simmer on low for 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove from heat. Add lemon juice. Taste, and adjust seasonings, if needed (more salt? more lemon juice?). Serve.