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#9 – Soups!

#9 – Soups!

Today’s Recipe Roundup is not about a specific recipe. Instead I’ll be talking about soups and how easy they are to make!

 

When I decide to make a soup, it’s usually not a planned affair, but rather a spark of inspiration from what I already have around my house. I’m a big fan of food that is the sum of many parts – something I can enjoy in a single bowl, but has variety within. It’s surprisingly easy to throw together a soup, especially if you have a little bit of time. And while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with canned soups, there is something really special about customizing such a comforting and nourishing dish.

 

The skeleton recipe that I am going to list will not work for every type of soup and I suggest that if you are wanting a very specific soup, just find a recipe for it. But I’ll try to give you a plan of action that will help you make many soups on the fly.

 

You’ll need:

  • Several tablespoons of oil or butter
  • Aromatics: herbs, spices, garlic, onion, celery, lemongrass
  • Chunks: Meat…Vegetables…lentils/split pea
  • Broths: chicken, beef, canned tomato products, water, milk
  • Things to add last: kale, beans (unless it’s a bean soup), fresh peas
  • Toppers and sides: sour cream, cheese, fresh herbs, chips, bread

 

  1. Start by heating your oil, I like to choose an oil that is going to complement the rest of the soup – olive oil is good for soups from a meat broth or tomato base, coconut oil and butter are good for creamy soups.
  2. Add in your aromatics and sautee them to release their essences. Binding the spices to your oil ensures that the seasonings of your soup will be integrated into the cooking of the other ingredients of your soup.
  3. When your onions become translucent (or you are confident the herbs have released their flavor into the oil) it’s time to add the chunks. First add your carrots, potatoes – any bulky vegetables that will take longest to cook. When they start sweating, you can add your meat. With a ground meat, you’ll cook until brown. With full muscles meat, cook until almost completely cooked through. (You want to maintain the moistness through the long cooking process)
  4. Add your broth and mix thoroughly. If you are using dairy I highly recommend waiting until the chunks are very much tender, you will not want to overcook a dairy broth.
  5. If you desire to add some greens, beans, or peas, do so when you estimate only 5 – 10 more minutes for the soup to be completed.
  6. Once all of your vegetables are tender to your preference, your soup is ready to be taken off heat and served with any number of accompaniments.

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