4-6 raw beetroots about 500g, tops removed and washed
3 bay leaves
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp red wine or malt vinegar
600ml low salt vegetable or chicken stock
4 spring onions, sliced quite thinly.
Cook the beetroot in boiling, salted water with the bay leaves for 50-60 minutes until tender. Cool in the water. When cool enough to handle, skin and dice.
Heat a pan and add the oil. Fry the onion, garlic and green chilli, if using, for 15 minutes or until really soft. Add the red wine vinegar and the diced beetroot. Tip in the hot stock and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Purée the soup, push through a sieve and season. If it's too thick, add a little more water or stock. Chill completely if serving cold.
Spoon into serving bowls or cups, and finish with the spring onions.