A family recipe, with a twist. This was my most requested soup at Kelly’s Kitchen. Understandably so. It’s perfect for this time of year. Hearty, flavorful, and guaranteed to have you coming back for seconds. I used half chorizo and half hot Italian sausage, for more of a kick.
A few tips for making the ultimate soup:
1. Always make your own stock. — it’s so easy, cheaper than boxed, and it actually has flavor. It makes an incredible difference.
2. Always use fresh ingredients. Many people think because it’s a soup it’s okay to use canned or frozen ingredients. Not the case. The fresher, the better, guaranteed. Especially when it comes to vegetables. If the canned or frozen looks better than fresh, it’s probably out of season, and you shouldn’t be using it anyway. The same reason we don’t eat butternut squash soup in July, and why asparagus is 5 dollars a pound right now.
3. Slow down! Soups don’t have to take all day. And yes, if you absolutely must cook a soup in 30 minutes, do what you’ve gotta do. But take some time, sweat out your aromatics, low and slow, let the flavors seep out. Slowly bring the soup up to a simmer, it holds the integrity of the ingredients, as well as an aid in flavor development and matrimony.
4. Speaking of flavor development, sear any proteins, get a beautiful, golden brown color. This is FLAVOR. Please, I beg of you, don’t just toss raw meat into a pot of stock and boil it.. that’s just disgusting.
5. Season, everything.. lighter at first, adjust as you go on. Season with more than salt and pepper. Use spices, toast those spices, and grind them yourself.
6. Taste throughout, so you know exactly what you want, and what you don’t want. If you taste a tomato soup when you first put it on the stove-top, you’ll get straight acid. Once you slowly cook the tomatoes, the acid turns to sugar, giving you a sweeter, more balanced product. You’ll know this by tasting, and often.
7. Love your food, and it’ll love you back. Be proud of it too! Cause a damn good soup is not as easy as it seems.