ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Looking for soup making advice
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Looking for soup making advice

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I'm looking to make a simple soup and need some help.

I plan on using beef stock, celery, onion, bell peppers, and various spices. My question is two fold - I want to make the soup somewhat thick, but not too thick, would I first make a roux and then slowly add it to the beef stock. Also would I be cooking the veggies in the beef stock or would they be cooked before hand, in the roux, or just dump them into the beef stock and cook them there and add the roux later.

Sorry for the noobish question but I'm not much of a cook and need some pointers. Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 9
Any of your methods will work. I sweat my veggies in butter(skip the bells and add carrots) at a 2-2-1 ratio of onion , celery and carrot, flour added to make the roux and then the stock, spices and beef and veggies or starch to finish.
The two most common things in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity !
Reply
The two most common things in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity !
Reply
post #3 of 9
The common rule of thumb for thickening with starch is "cold into hot, or hot into cold." This avoids lumps, among other things.

When roux is used to thicken, (relatively) cool liquid, i.e., around room temp, is added to hot roux. The proper way to do this is to add a little liquid to the roux, stir until smoothly incorporated, allow to come to boil before adding more liquid. Never add more liquid at any one time than will double the volume.

Thickening a hot, more-or-less finished soup with a starch, like flour, corn starch, or arrowroot, is typically done with a slurry or beurre manie.

A very traditional method for thickening the sort of soup you describe is to toss in a few slices of stale white bread or the equivalent in fresh crumbs. Crumbs would be my preferred method.

Other types of starch such as potatoes, rice, barley, beans, legumes and pasta, may be added and cooked into a soup. The amount of thickening depends on time, amounts and type of starch.

Some vegetables like okra, and vegetable products like tomato paste also give some structure.

A common, modern way of thickening is to cook a few vegetables, remove them when they're soft, puree and return to the pot. If desired, fresh vegetables are added later, timed to be cooked a point when the soup is served. This is what you'd most likely see in a high end restaurant.

The more specific you are about what you want to do, the more specific I can be aiding you.

Hope this helps,
BDL
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tips.
post #5 of 9

if you make a puree

of some of the veges you can use that for thickening , or you can also use things like rice , barley, potatoes which you cook in with the other ingrediants and that can help to thicken it as well
when life hands you lemons, make lemon gelee, lemon meringue pie, or any other dessert your heart desires

www.theunknownchef.com
www.theunknownchef.co.nz
www.shoebridge.co.nz
Reply
when life hands you lemons, make lemon gelee, lemon meringue pie, or any other dessert your heart desires

www.theunknownchef.com
www.theunknownchef.co.nz
www.shoebridge.co.nz
Reply
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Last night I tried to make a roux and completely botched it - I added the flour to the butter way to fast so it turned out looking like a cookie dough or something along those lines. I decided to go in a different direction.

I found a nifty recipe from foodnetwork.com that was for a mushroom soup. I didn't follow it to the letter, but i was surprised how good the end results came out.

Tonight I did the same recipe again because I really liked the flavor, but I kinda wanted to try something different (you know learn by trial and error :P).

Even though I'm a noob at cooking I'll share what I did. Maybe someone will like it. Of course I'm sure its been done a million times :P

1 & 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
2 cups heavy creme
3 quartered white mushrooms
2 quartered yellow onions
2 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of butter
few dashes of sea salt
Black pepper
a few heavy dashes of dinosaur BBQ habenero sauce

Saute the mushrooms, onions, and garlic. threw in the creme and stock and the hot sauce. Let it simmer for about an hour and a half and then threw in some more hot sauce and salt and pepper to taste.

I thought the hot sauce would kill it but it really gave it a subtle flavor that was nice. Came out great though, but I want to try to add more flavors to it. I was thinking like aromatics or something like that. I guess I would go about doing that with herbs and such but I'm not certain.
post #7 of 9
Next time don't give up on your roux so fast. Just keep stirring and stirring over medium heat until all of the flour is combined with all of the fat. Then stir some more until the roux loses the raw flour smell and acquire just a little bit of color (blonde roux), or keep on going until it's the color of mahogany.

A roux is not a finished product, but merely a step along the way. "[L]ooking like cookie dough or something along those lines," is just fine.

Add your liquid in the following way: First add an amount no greater than the amount of roux. Bring the heat up to medium-high and stir until smooth(er) and bubbling. (The mix will be too stiff to really smooth out.) Add the same volume of liquid again, again stir until smooth(er) and bubbling. (This time it will still be stiff, but getting very smooth -- took a while from adding the flour, eh?). Now you can double the amount of liquid added. Stir frequently (it doesn't have to be constant anymore) until simmering. Add the rest of the liquid and bring to a simmer. After the mixture simmers for two or three minutes the roux will have compeltely gelatinized and for the first time you'll know just exactly how thick your mixture is. Thin with water or any other liquid, or thicken by slow reduction.

Note 1: A roux bound sauce will thicken with holding -- whether on the heat, off, or even refrigerated. Maybe the flour wasn't so completely gelatinized after all.

Note 2: It's barely possible to break a sauce or soup bound with roux, I suppose. But I've never managed to do it.

BDL
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
I see. I got a little freaked out because before i decided to rush the roux it had a nice color and consistency to it. Then i got a little impatient (wrong train of thought I know :P) and just dumped the remaining flour in causing it to clump as i decribed in my previous post. I also did not know I could thin it with water. I will remember that for next time. Thanks!
post #9 of 9

whats your ratio of fat to flour

it should be a 50/50 mix, so half butter/oil half flour ... equal quantities
we always tend to use butter here in NZ , it just makes a nicer shiner better tasting sauce/soup
when life hands you lemons, make lemon gelee, lemon meringue pie, or any other dessert your heart desires

www.theunknownchef.com
www.theunknownchef.co.nz
www.shoebridge.co.nz
Reply
when life hands you lemons, make lemon gelee, lemon meringue pie, or any other dessert your heart desires

www.theunknownchef.com
www.theunknownchef.co.nz
www.shoebridge.co.nz
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Food & Cooking
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Looking for soup making advice