A Blog for Modern Traditionalists

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Spicing Things Up at The London Chef in Victoria

Spicing Things Up at The London Chef in Victoria

As you might have suspected, cooking your own food from scratch is an essential component of “The Life Nostalgic.” But lest you should be seduced by all the cute imagery out there implying that retro goddesses only eat cakes and homemade jam, well….you best be loosening your apron strings! […]

Knitted: Varsity Sweater

Knitted: Varsity Sweater

The varsity sweater: peer of the poodle skirt, wholesome, All-American and fun. It’s the quintessential 1950s teen look (see pic below, which I will translate to: “I can’t believe I’m wearing his sweater! Jeez Louise, when’s the last time he washed this thing, it’s a little […]

Out of the Closet: Confectioner’s Dream Dress

Out of the Closet: Confectioner’s Dream Dress

It’s not every day that you stumble upon a secret meadow full of flowers (or maybe some people do, if so please forward your longitude/latitude), but when Billy and I found this magical place we knew we had to rush back before these purple flowers turned geriatric and limp.

Silly still from our pitch video.

It just so happened that we needed to shoot some scenes for a pitch video we’re making for a music video grant. The location was a no-brainer; we rushed back to the magic meadow with our camera and were delighted to find that no steamrollers had ploughed through the area in the interim.

Confectioner's Dream Retro Dress ModCloth

In the pitch video, I wore the Confectioner’s Dream Dress from ModCloth, and we decided to be opportunistic and take a few extra snaps for The Life Nostalgic. The dress, with its Peter Pan collar and soft polka dots, is all yesteryear sweetness, which is what I’m all about on this here blog.

Confectioner's Dream Retro Dress ModCloth

Toward the end of our stay in the meadow, the clouds turned ominous. To my astonishment, I found myself falling down a rabbit hole shortly after this next picture was taken, and the cries of the Jujub bird seemed to mock me from above. Thankfully, I emerged unscathed – not a single bandersnatch bite!

Confectioner's Dream Retro Dress ModCloth

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How To Make Delicious Doukhobor Borscht

How To Make Delicious Doukhobor Borscht

The Russians know cold. But instead of blogging about how much vodka you can safely consume in a sitting, I decided to post this recipe for a tummy-warming vegetarian soup called Doukhobor Borscht. I find that as November closes in, I’m drawn to soup like a sock to a static-charged skirt.

Babushka Reb teach you make soup!

You may have encountered BORSCHT before, but it was probably the straight-up purple variety. That stuff is yummy, there’s no doubt, but it’s got nothin’ on DOUKHOBOR BORSCHT. Creamy, flavourful and jam-packed with a mighty assortment of vegetables, I stand by this recipe as the ultimate borscht.

The Doukhobors are a sect of Russian Christians who immigrated to Canada in the 19th century. They settled in south-eastern British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan.

I found this particular recipe in Grand Forks, B.C. in a museum. So I know it’s authentic. FACT.

For your convenience: a printable borscht recipe.

Ingredients for Doukhobor Borscht

***please note that in the demonstration photos, I’ve halved the recipe, but the amounts listed here are for the full batch. If you make the whole thing, it’s going to be a large vat of liquid nutrition***

  • 1 large onion
  • 1 quart (1.13 litres) canned whole tomatoes
  • 1 medium carrot, grated
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 1 small beet, grated
  • 6 medium potatoes
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 1/2 lb (1 cup) butter
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium head of cabbage, shredded
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp dill leaves (I prefer a big handful of chopped, fresh dill instead)

Brace yourself for beet hands!

You’ll need two pots for this operation, one major soup-pot (especially if you’re making the whole batch) and one medium pot.


How to make Doukhobor Russian Borscht Soup(1) In the medium pot: melt half the butter and fry the onion until glossy and translucent. Add the tomatoes, grated carrot, half the beet and half the green pepper.

Boil for 20 minutes, stirring constantly and breaking up the tomatoes with your rustic wooden spoon.

It will turn into a rich red stew (2).

Meanwhile, in the major soup pot, boil 3.5 litres of water (3).

To this water, add 3 potatoes (cut in half), the remaining beet, diced carrot, celery and a generous dash of salt. This will be the foundation of your soup. Boil until the potatoes are done.

When they’re soft, fish out the potatoes and mash them in a separate bowl. Set them aside (4).

Doukhobor Borscht recipe - adding cream

Now add the remaining butter (1/2 cup), whipping cream and 3 diced potatoes to the major pot.

Boil for 1 minute, then add the tomato stew you boiled earlier.

Add the cabbage and mashed potatoes as well. Bring to a boil, then add the remaining green pepper and the dill. Season well with salt and pepper.

Let it simmer for a while to deepen the flavour.

Doukhobor Borscht Recipe by The Life Nostalgic Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a sprig of dill. I served mine with homemade biscuits, but a nice chunk of whole grain bread would be good too.

Enjoy your authentic Doukhobor Borscht! Leave me a comment if you intend to make this.