Friday, August 14, 2009

The Secret to Good Soup

I love soup. I grew up with my mom frequently creating what she called "Garbage Soup," which is actually much better than it sounds. It basically meant pulling whatever was on the shelf and any leftovers or fresh vegies in the fridge and putting it together. It never tasted the same, but one thing I could always count on is that it was going to be good.

So, as I became a mother and wife and started looking for cheap ways to feed my three boys, soup was a natural solution. My first attempts were edible, but not great, until I found a book on making soup. I never liked any of their recipes, but they had some awesome advice that has stuck with me over the years.

The advice was this: Flavor your broth the way you want it before you add any meat or vegetables. That's it. Simple advice, but I've found that when I follow it and make my broth as tasty as I can ahead of time my soup always turns out perfect. When I forget and add the flavoring later, no matter how hard I try I can't make it quite right.

Tonight I made some vegetable soup that totally rocked! I'm not a follow a receipe kind of gal. I'm like my mother in this. I take what I can find and toss it in if I think it will taste good. I know most people aren't like that, so I'll toss out my ingredients here and if anyone wants to attempt my rockin' veggie soup, go ahead, and let me know how it turns out!

beef bullion
chicken bullion
Knorr Vegetable Bouillon (4 cubes)
Knorr Tomato bullion with chicken flavor
Knorr Chipotle seasoning bullion cube
Garlic powder
Onion powder
curry (not too much. Just to taste)
juice of one lime
3-4 sprigs fresh basil

Everything else:
1 can of black beans
1 can of red beans
1 can of RoTel diced tomatoes & Green chilies
1 bag of frozen white corn
3 stalks celery
2 carrots
1 sweet onion
1 large zucchini (=about 4 small)
3 small potatoes
3 fresh roma tomatoes
multigrain noodles

Dice all the vegies to whatever size you like and toss them in. Let it boil until potatoes and noodles are soft enough to eat and veggies are cooked through.

Sorry I don't have specific amounts on the bullion. I'm a shake and taste person. Just remember, you can always add more water if it gets too strong.

One last tip: BE GENEROUS with the garlic and onion powder. They make everything taste better!!!


Nichole Giles said...

Sounds so yummy! I love making soup, especially in the winter. In fact, I think my kids get tired of soup because it's all I want to make when the weather is cold. There's just something so comforting about a good bowl of soup.

Great tip on the broth--I'm going to try that for sure next time.


Elena said...

Soup is the best. I'll be right over with some crusty bread.