All in the Family! Guest Bender: Kelli from Brain.Guts.Hands. [VIDEO!]

by Jenn (eating bender) on February 19, 2010

Happy Friday!

If you are friends with me on Facebook, you may have been privy to some exciting news that I’ve been wanting to share with everyone. If we aren’t Facebook friends, we 1) need to solve that problem pronto, so email me at and tell me how I can find you! and 2) will have to have a chat sometime very soon :) I am drafting up a big announcement post for the weekend that will provide a lot more details. You know how us bloggers love our announcement posts! This one should be fun.


Glad you were all as impressed as I was with Natalie’s culinary talent!

Today’s Guest Bender is all in the family. I was so excited when I found out recently that my cousin Kelli had started a blog: Brain.Guts.Hands. She is an awesome person and we go way back to our early years. Everything from dancing at weddings as little girls to riding our first-ever roller coaster together — the Pepsi Rickshaw at Mall of America, back when it was still called Camp Snoopy! We’ve seen and done a lot through the years and although I wish I could see her more often now that we’re older, I’m delighted to present her in VIDEO form for all of you!

Kelli will be paying tribute to our Polish heritage, with a recipe included. Enjoy!


Beets: It’s What’s For Dinner

Hey dudes! I’m Kelli and am pretty excited to be today’s Guest Bender. I’m also super pumped to share my delicious, easy peasy beet borscht soup recipe with you guys.

Some of you may be aware that Jenn and I are cousins and share a bit of Polish heritage, so I figured this Eastern European staple food would be a great way to pay tribute to our shared ancestry — plus, it makes for great mid-winter comfort food.

I adapted this recipe from a couple of different sources, but there’s really no “right” or “wrong” way to make borscht.

Here is what you will need to make the magic happen:

  • 2 lbs beets, grated or diced
  • 3-4 new potatoes (e.g. the cuties with the red skins), diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 1 large cooking onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch dill, stems separated from fronds
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/8 tsp mustard seeds
  • 5-8 peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sour cream OR plain Greek or Balkan style yogurt

The very low-key cooking process is detailed in the video I’ve made for you guys. Enjoy!

Note: You may need to click out of Google Reader to see the video below :)


Thanks to Kelli for sharing a piece of Polish pie with all of us — er, I mean borscht!

Do any of you pay tribute to your heritage through cooking? If so, how?

I hope that you have some exciting weekend plans ahead of you!


1 *Andrea* February 19, 2010 at 10:34 am

great post! i love that great blogging runs in your family 😉 i unfortunately do not like to cook… but i love mediterranean food like my armenian heritage (olives, hummous, tabouleh, paklava, bulgur) and love brown bread, sweet POTATOES and the occasion guinnes from my irish half too haha

2 Erica February 19, 2010 at 10:41 am

CONGRATSSSSSSSSSSSS again :) So happy for you

What a great post! The recipe sounds amazing and I love the video. You can see some family resemblance! And Kelli seems so comfortable in front of the camera

3 BroccoliHut February 19, 2010 at 2:37 pm

YUM! I am always on board for adding more beets to my diet:)

4 Jessie February 19, 2010 at 5:23 pm

Yum, that soup looks great! I love beets :)

I love to cook Asian food to reflect my heritage, although I’m not always authentic 😉

I want to know the news!

5 Shannon February 19, 2010 at 5:29 pm

should’ve realized you were polish, but ME TOO!!! i love making pierogies and the rest of the holiday traditions :)

6 Can You Stay for Dinner February 20, 2010 at 9:06 am

Wonderful guest post! Looks delicious!
And yes, I make some things from my grandmothers like Irish Soda Bread and an old family recipe for Marinara Sauce and meatballs. Irish and Italian, what can I say?

7 Jill Felska February 20, 2010 at 11:40 am

I’ve been refreshing your page all morning, hoping your post would be up. Can’t waaaait to read it! :)

8 Jill Felska February 20, 2010 at 11:47 am

P.S. Your cousin is ADORABLE and the recipe sounds amazing. I may have to include it as one of the few things I know how to cook!

9 braingutshands February 20, 2010 at 12:22 pm

Haha I was worried that “awkward” would be the adjective of choice here, but I’m glad you opted for “adorable!” -Kelli (the cuz)

10 braingutshands February 21, 2010 at 12:10 pm

By the way, congrats to both of you on your new and exciting career endeavor. I really look forward to hearing about how it goes!

11 jenngirl February 21, 2010 at 7:53 am

About to go read your announcement post!!

Great guest post–so fun you guys are cousins! :) I would pay homage to my German heritage, however, I’m not much of a fan of German foods…I’m sure there’s something out there that would be good though

12 Barb Korducki February 24, 2010 at 1:49 pm

I am getting together with some friends tonight for a last minute soup making party. I am so glad that this borscht receipe is here because I have been looking for one that I know is delicious. That sweet sour tangy taste complemented by a dash of light sour cream.

Dzia Dzia Korducki has been craving some too. If anyone gets an opprotuity to make him a batch of borscht, it would be awesome.

13 Barb Korducki February 24, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Oops. Didn’t do a spell check. Please correct “opportunity”

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