Have you ever thought how easy it is to make your own soups? Vegetable soups can make an excellent detox meal or a warming comfort food, come cooler weather. Follow these five basic steps and you’re on your way to making hearty soups in time for autumn.
1. Basic ingredient
Most soups start with sauteing the onion and / or garlic or leek (leeks have a milder taste to onions).
When the onion is translucent, but not burnt, add any spices or herbs (if using). Saute stiring continuously for one or two minutes.
2. Other ingredients
Once the onion is coated with any spices (if using), tip in the pulses – lentils, beans, dried peas etc.- (wash pulses under running water before use).
Cut the vegetables into small pieces – keep them of a similar size so they cook evenly. If using root vegetables put these in first, cause they take longer to cook. Stir for a couple of minutes until your ingredients are coated with the onion mixture before adding the stock.
Add the stock – you can make your own homemade stock or add hot water to a stock pot or bouillon. If using the latter, check out the sodium content of the product and go easy when seasoning your soup. You can easily ruin your soup by adding too much salt.
Once you add the stock, bring it to the boil and lower the heat to allow the soup to simmer. Cooking time depends on your choice of ingredients but a lot of vegetable soups cook in just under 30 minutes.
4. How to serve
Serving your soup is a matter of preference. Some people like chunky soups, others prefer smooth. Some like thick soups, whilst others prefer a thinner consistency to their soups. Go for what you prefer; there’s no hard and fast rule.
For a chunky soup squash your ingredients with a potato masher or pulse in a food processor. A vegetable mill (if you have one) gives your soup a thick, rustic texture.
To obtain a smoother result, process your soup in a food blender or a smoothie machine.
If you’d like to thin out your soup, add some hot water. If your soup is too runny, add two tablespoons of quinoa, quinoa porridge or bulgur wheat in the simmering stage to thicken the consistency.
You can serve your soup with crusty bread or unbuttered toast to add substance and make it more filling.
5. Benefits of homemade soups
Homemade soups are quick and easy to make. Once you master the basic steps you will appreciate the benefits of homemade over the convenience of buying ready made soups, anytime.
Homemade soups are
- a nutritious meal in a bowl;
- a good lunch box item;
- good hearty suppers on a cold day;
- refreshing when served chilled;
- quick and easy to make;
Try making your own soups and find out how good you are at doing so!
My thanks go