4 large, fresh beets
4 c. water
2 tsp. sugar, honey or orange juice concentrate
1 tsp. salt
1 medium cucumber
1/2 c. very finely minced scallions or leeks
2 c. buttermilk
1 Tbs. fresh, chopped dill
fresh black pepper

Peel and quarter the beets. Place in a saucepan with the water, salt, and cook covered for 15 minutes over medium heat. Set aside to cool. When cool, remove them, coarsely grate, and return to the cooking water. Add remaining ingredients, except buttermilk. Mix well. Chill until very cold. Whisk the buttermilk in before serving. Garnish with sour cream, chunks of cold boiled potato, and chopped hard-cooked egg.

(from Mad Mares Cookbook)

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