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Old 01-06-2010, 02:24 PM
 
3,647 posts, read 4,632,492 times
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Good afternoon, eveyone! Since the cold weather is gripping most of the country, I'm sharing my soup plan today. Last night I made soup for the third time since Christmas. All of the potato soup is long gone and there is a small batch of the white bean in the freezer. My plan includes cooking a "base" soup where you can add different ingredients for different soups. What I cooked last night was a very basic broth style chicken soup. This has carrots, onion, celery, chicken, rice and a few spices. Tonight I am adding milk (wish this was half and half or cream, but have to nudge toward a diet somehow), grated cheddar cheese and corn. You could also add some cooked bacon and potatoes. I'll serve a spinach salad with this and some drop biscuits. Later in the week I'll use the base soup and add fresh spinach leaves, grated lemon rind, a little lemon juice and some roasted cherry tomatoes for garnish. With the lighter soup I'll have a more substantial salad, one with some meat and cheese, and a bread. Yum! You can satisfy picky eaters and stretch the budget at the same time by varying the added ingredients. I wish it was dinner time!
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Old 01-06-2010, 02:53 PM
 
Location: The Hall of Justice
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You could add a can of undrained black or pinto beans and some salsa, too, and make taco soup. If you want to be indulgent, put a few tortilla chips and some grated cheese on the bottom of your bowls before ladling the hot soup over it.

You can buy bags of frozen roasted corn at Trader Joe's. I like it in taco or tortilla soups because of the smoky flavor.
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Old 01-06-2010, 11:19 PM
 
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The frozen roasted corn and tortilla chips sound great. Thanks for the suggestions!
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:02 AM
 
Location: South Central Texas
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This all sounds like my kind of stuff!! You two are making me hungry!!!!
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Old 01-07-2010, 07:09 AM
 
Location: Live - VT, Work - MA
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I do the same thing, make a basic chicken soup, homemade stock, onions, celery, carrots and chicken, then leave the rice or noodles out until I want soup (otherwise the noodles absorb all the broth and turn to mush). I then can add spinach and noodles for a hearty chicken soup or some salsa, black beans, chipotles and lime juice for a version of tortilla soup etc.

When I have rice or noodles with it, I make a small batch just for the night and put them in the bowl first then ladle the soup over them, I don’t like mushy rice and noodles in my soup.

Lately I have been keeping a couple large bags of French Onion in the freezer as well, blew through our last one last night……….guess I have to make something else this weekend.

Anytime we have a roast chicken or turkey I make a load of stock to be used for soup and will obviously make soup at the time with the meat.

I made a mean kale and white bean soup last year which I may have to bust out again……….mmmmmmmmmmm soup.
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Old 01-07-2010, 08:02 AM
 
Location: The Hall of Justice
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I love kale in soups. I've made ribollita a few times (white bean and ham soup that is ladled over toast, onion, and cheese and then baked), and the kale adds such a nice flavor.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:51 PM
 
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Ooo -- I love French onion soup. I think I'll make that next week. Thanks for the idea.
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Old 01-08-2010, 06:07 AM
 
Location: Live - VT, Work - MA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PooPooPlatter View Post
Just make a stock like a proper cook. Nobody likes overcooked round 2 vegetables. You're not really saving time with your proposed method which will only lead to crowded flavors and lousy textures.

Welcome Mr. Bourdain, good to see you!!!………..I hope this isn’t a “Seagull Post” where you fly in, crap all over everything, then fly away……….

In all seriousness, your point has merit to some degree. Ever frozen a bag of chicken soup before? It isn’t the end of the world.

I make my stock like a normal chef, however since I spend 11 hours a day sitting in front of a computer to make my living, it is nice to come home and prepare a nice bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup in 15 mins for my wife. Making sure I have carrots, onions, garlic, celery, thyme, parsley, spinach, shredded chicken and stock all in the house and 2 hours to let it all blend together is a different ballgame entirely.

For the home cook, with time constraints, having a base soup that you can stretch into 2 or 3 different directions isn’t such a bad idea.

When James Beard comes to my house on a Tuesday night to rate my cooking I’ll make everything from scratch that night, until then, I’ll freeze a nice batch of soup, stew, tomato sauce or chili.
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Old 01-08-2010, 01:03 PM
 
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Well . . . this saves me a lot of time and we like it! It's good to have two or three dinners out of one cooking session. In fact, dinner is ready for tonight. All I have to do is reheat the soup, which doesn't obliterate the taste to to me, and let the heat wilt the spinach leaves. Tomorrow I'm having the bean soup I froze last week. To each his own!
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Old 01-10-2010, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Live - VT, Work - MA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PooPooPlatter View Post
Tomato sauce and chili are entirely different situations. And to a certain extent freezing a complete soup is a little different as well, but taking a cooked soup, adding ingredients and then cooking it AGAIN makes very little sense. Half the ingredients will be cooked properly and the rest will be obliterated. Go ahead and have frozen stock and while the stock is thawing you have plenty of time to prep the rest of the ingredients. I mean, who doesn't have a mirepoix on hand?
We're talking about adding simple things to a soup to finish it, we aren't talking about taking a frozen soup and cooking the snot out of it for another 2 hours, at least I'm not. Adding spinach, or fresh noodles, shrooms, etc. doesn't take much longer than heating up the frozen soup to begin with. I have never had a piece of carrot, celery, shreaded chicken or onion obliterated by using this process. We're talking soup, not trying to launch the space shuttle here......
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