what makes a good soup?

ingredientsWe love soup. Even in hot weather. Maybe because Filipinos hate eating dry food. Either we have sabaw, or we have sarsa/sawsawan.

I consider soup as one of the more patriotic culinary symbols any country or culture can have. It does not require a particular type of meat ingredient or cooking utensil. All it takes is boiling water and all the local ingredients you dare put in.

A sad reality is that soup often originated from the lower income class of a society. Those that cannot afford higher quality ingredients and had to make do with the cheapest and least sought after produce. Surprisingly, the lower cuts of meat and vegetables were hardly devoid of flavor. Although less tender and rougher in texture, these cheaper ingredients tend to offer more nutrients. And the low, slow and immersed cooking that tougher ingredients require allows the development and extraction of more intense flavors.

shrimp shellsA famous Chinese chef once said, “when you have good stock, you can make good soup.” I totally agree. For me, the best soup stock comes from shrimp shellings. The last time we had some shrimp leftover from Turo’s seafood grilling Sunday lunch assignment, I knew a shrimp-based soup was in order.

It was a Chinese food night and what better soup to go with it than shrimp & corn soup. Here’s how I did it.

I cooked sweet corn kernels in shrimp stock.

corn-stock

Chopped up some shrimp, tofu and leeks and added them into the soup.

shrimp-tofu-leek

Added the yolk of an egg and a little cornstarch mixture for a thicker consistency.

cornstarch-egg

With fresh ingredients, a rich soup stock and a well-matched menu, your soup is always good.

corn shrimp soup

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3 thoughts on “what makes a good soup?

  1. madali magluto. mahirap magplano. masakit sa bulsa. lalo na kung gusto mo e healthy and fresh food para sa pamilya mo.

    just last sunday, i also attempted a molo soup for dinner. it was my first time to make dumplings. it was delicious. pero napansin ko lang, the molo wrappers tend to absorb a lot of liquid. so that i instructed my son’s nanny the next day to add water and re-boil the soup for their lunch.

    you’re right about the shrimp. yun din ang nagpasarap ng soup ko. pero grabe, ang mahal talaga ng shrimp!

    1. yeah ang mahal na talaga ng lahat ng food items, whether sa palengke or grocery. kailangan very careful meal planning so you cut down on costs without sacrificing nutrition. i’ve developed a meal planning matrix which seems to save me some time planning recipes and creating a checklist of the things i need to buy from the market. i’ve used it for our last 2 week-menu. needs some fine tuning. when i’m confident enough, i’ll gladly share it with you.

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