Saturday, January 9, 2010


Everyone at work always oohs and aahs at the "gourmet" lunches I bring in. Usually its some simple homemade vegetable soup I grabbed out of the freezer. Soups are the easiest to make and freeze so well for meals on the go. And, they are really hard to screw up. While I usually freestyle all my soups, these are the basic steps I always follow when I make a vegetable soup:

1. Extra virgin olive oil goes in a heavy pot with some garlic and onions or shallots.
2. Consider your spices: red pepper flakes, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, curry, bay leaf, turmeric, ginger zest, rosemary, nutmeg - all of those ingredients should go into the onion garlic mix. This will be the base flavor of your soup. Sautee until soft.
3. Now your main vegetable goes in, squash, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, etc. Chop them up for quick cooking and season with salt and pepper. Sautee a few minutes.
4. Potato time. Skin on or off. Dice them small and let them sautee for a few minutes. They will lend a creamy thickness to your soup.
5. Vegetable Broth, enough to cover the veggies. Bring this to a boil then simmer until everything is soft. Usually 20 minutes is perfect. You can also use a bouillon with enough water to cover, or even concentrated broth packets.
6. Time to puree. A hand blender works best. If you use a blender be very careful.
7. Going creamy? This is the time to add the milk or cream. Coconut Milk is a great alternative to cream and amazing with curried soups. Continue to simmer on low until you have the desired consistency.
8. Salt and pepper to taste. Always taste your soup. Its easy to make bland soups.
9. Add butter to punch up the richness right at the end or some type of fancy oil, like truffle oil or hot chili oil.
10. Garnish with parsley or cilantro, croutons or toasted nuts, sour cream, yogurt.


1/2 onion
1 clove of garlic
4 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 potatoes
cayenne pepper to taste
grated nutmeg
1 TBSP fresh grated ginger
1 Bay Leaf
2 Cups of vegetable broth, or enough to cover
Toasted Pecans for garnish

Follow above directions.


Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A great soup! Simple is wonderful!



Rocco Galatioto said...

Great article on the nuts and bolts of soup making, not to mention the great photo.

grace said...

those are some excellent tips! i'm particularly intrigued by the suggestion of using coconut milk to impart creaminess. great post (and tasty-looking soup!). :)