How to cook the perfect soup from scratch
Autumn is the perfect time to snuggle up in front of the TV with a warm bowl of homemade soup. It’s one of the country’s favourite comfort foods and is great for warming you up on a cold day. But how do you make the perfect soup from scratch? Here are some top tips to get you started.
Choose your ingredients
There are so many different soup recipes out there. Look through your cookbooks or search online to find your favourite. You could even ask friends and relatives to pass down their best recipes. A popular choice is tomato soup made with carrots, onions, and other seasonal vegetables.
Another option is chicken and vegetable soup made with celery, carrots, and fresh parsley. Alternatively go for something less traditional like parsnip and apple soup. Whatever you choose, try to use in-season vegetables to get the most from the flavours.
Get the water right
It might sound like a simple ingredient but water is the main component of many soups, therefore it’s important to get it right. For the best results, it’s a great idea to use filtered water. Filtering removes the impurities and a lot of people also find that it improves the taste. There are many different types of filters on the market, so do your research and find the best one for you.
It’s also worth thinking about how you heat your water for cooking. For example, lots of recipes call for boiling water with vegetable stock. In some cases, this actually forms the base of the soup. If you’re looking to save time when cooking, you could benefit from using a hot water tap. Hot water taps provide instant boiling water, which is much quicker than using a kettle or the hob. Visit one of our local showrooms to see a Quooker hot water tap in action.
Perfect your technique
Once your ingredients are combined in the pan, your recipe may tell you to bring them to the boil. In most cases, it’s then advisable to bring your soup to a simmer, rather than continuing to boil. Boiling for too long can ruin the flavours which is particularly pertinent when cooking meat.
Another good tip is to season your soup as you go. Don’t just follow the recipe verbatim. Instead, keep taste testing throughout (make sure the soup has cooled down before tasting!). Adding a dairy product such as cream or milk to your soup can create a lovely thick texture. However, it’s important to gently warm it first to avoid curdling. If in doubt, always refer to the recipe to ensure all your ingredients are cooked properly.
Serve with style
A great soup deserves a nice presentation, so give some thought to how you serve yours. If you’re preparing soup for a group of friends, serve it hot but warn them to let it cool before they tuck in. If you’re curling up in front of the TV with your soup, why not serve it in your favourite bowl, or even a large mug? Don’t forget to garnish your meal with fresh herbs, croutons, or Parmesan cheese. A spoon of natural yoghurt or sour cream also works well with certain recipes.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this article. To learn more about water filters for your home, click here.
[Photo by zoskey]
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