What exactly is a vegetable soup? Let's just say: Water, in which vegetables are cooked long enough to mix with the water. That's the principle of course, after that it can be made in an infinite number of ways by changing the liquid (water, milk, broth, juice,...) and all the vegetables you can put in it, it's a recipe that's almost as old as humanity, and fire, and yes, pottery too.
It's very easy to make: a pan, you pour water, you add peeled vegetables, you salt a little and you cook for a long time. A small modern concession, a little shot of mixer
at the end of cooking to obtain a smooth soup and hey presto, it's ready.
Let's put this into practice with the leek and potato soup
, one of the pillars of French home cooking:
- Leeks are washed, peeled and sliced
- Potatoes are peeled, washed and cut into small pieces
- Put everything in a large saucepan, cover with water and salt
- Cook, mix if necessary, and it's ready
Is that all? No, not quite, because it is possible to improve this method considerably by working the vegetables a little before adding the water. Let's start again:
- Wash, peel and slice leeks
- Peel, wash and chop potatoes
This is where it changes
- In the pot where the soup will be cooked, heat a little olive oil (or butter) over high heat
- Add a chopped onion and fry for 1 minute
- Add leek and potatoes to the pan, salt, pepper, and stir well, and cook for 3 or 4 minutes
- Then add the water and cook.
This little change is the trick that does it all: Frying the vegetables together, with the onion and a little oil/butter, before putting in the water, will give them a taste and depth that will be much better than vegetables simply added to the future soup water. This goes for all soups
, to all vegetables.To sum up
: Always fry the vegetables in a future soup for a few minutes with each other, the taste will be much better.
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