1/2 cup dried mushrooms (or more to taste)
1 lg onion, chopped
3 tbsp vegetable oil
2 md beets, cut in thin strips
1/2 sm parsley root, cut in strips
8 to 9 cups water
1 sm carrot, cut in thin strips
1 sm potato, diced
1 sm stalk celery, diced
3 cups shredded cabbage
1/2 cup tomato juice
Beet kvass or lemon juice
1/2 clove garlic, crushed (optional)
1/2 cup cooked white beans
Salt and pepper
1. Pour hot water over the mushrooms, drain, and wash. Cover with lukewarm water and soak for 30 minutes or longer. The period of soaking will depend on the variety of mushrooms used. The boletus variety (white hryby) requires little or no soaking. Cook the mushrooms in the same water in which they were soaked until they are tender.
2. Cook the onion in the oil until slightly wilted. Add the beets, parsley, peppercorns, and water. Cover and cook until the beets are barely done. Add the carrot, potato, and celery, and continue cooking for about 15 minutes. At this stage put in the cabbage, and cook until it is tender but not overcooked.
3. The cabbage should retain some crispness. Add the remaining ingredients. Use the beet kvas or lemon juice with discretion. The borsch should be mildly tart but not sour. Season to taste. Finally add the cooked, chopped, or whole mushrooms along with the mushroom stock. Bring to a boil. Serve.