Herbs, Spices & Other Seasonings
Herbs and spices are essential to the art of soup
making. In some soups, they're the central theme — but generally, they
serve to enhance and complement the other ingredients. Both Frontier and Simply Organic offer a full
selection of soup seasonings, including:
Basil: Good with
tomato-base soups and many vegetables.
Leaf: Used in stews and with beans and vegetables. Remove the leaves
Cayenne: Adds spicy
hotness and may be used in place of black pepper.
Seed: A strong, distinctive flavor, to be used sparingly. Whole seeds
should be cooked for at least an hour, while ground seed may be added towards
the end of cooking.
Chervil: A pungent
addition to many thin soups, sometimes substituted for parsley.
Powder: Most often found in chili but also delicious in other soups.
powder: Adds heat and a touch of smoky flavor to Mexican style soups,
bean soups or corn chowder.
Cumin: Good in
vegetable soups, chili, and other bean soups, as well as Mexican and Indian
Curry: A delicious
addition to soups containing grains, vegetables, lentils, or split peas.
Dill: Fragrant and
delicious in potato or onion soups. Dill weed is best added near the end of
cooking, while dill seed needs to cook for a long period and is best used
Fennel: Used sparingly,
fennel's strong taste adds a delightful and distinctive touch to squash soup
and beef stew.
Garlic: Garlic adds
instant flavor to almost any soup. It is available in a variety of
forms—fresh, powdered, granulated, and flaked. Granulated is easy to
measure and dissolves nicely if allowed to cook a few minutes before serving.
Powdered garlic is less strong than granulated.
Marjoram: Flavorful in
minestrone, onion, chicken, and potato soups.
Onion: Many soups start with the sautéing of onions, and for good
reason! Onion is available in the same forms as garlic.
Parsley: Parsley may be added to almost any soup. It adds lovely
color and a refreshing taste. While fresh parsley is sometimes tough in soups,
dried parsley is consistently tasty, easy to measure, colorful, and delicate.
Rosemary: The clean,
strong flavor of rosemary perks up vegetable or chicken soups. (Use it
with a light touch.)
Salt: Salt soups sparingly. Use it to coax out other
flavors rather than dominate your dish. Sea salt contains trace minerals
and is free of additives sometimes found in table salt.
Thyme: Release the
distinctive flavor and aroma of thyme by crushing it between your fingers as
you sprinkle it in vegetable and rice soups.
can also use dulse flakes (right out of the bag or toasted) in soups—especially
Asian-style ones—to enhance flavor, boost nutrition and provide salt.
Soups are a great place to
experiment with spices. There are no hard and fast rules about what seasonings
to use in what soups, but if you're feeling the need for some direction, here's
a good place to start—the following list gives you some suggestions for
using the spices described above and some others commonly used in soups:
Bean soups: cumin, garlic,
onions, parsley, sage, savory,
Beef, chicken and turkey
basil, bay leaf, cinnamon,
curry powder, dill, garlic, ginger, mace,
parsley, rosemary, saffron,
sage, savory, thyme
Fruit soups: anise,
ginger, mace, mint,
Seafood soups: basil, chives,
curry powder, dill, garlic, ginger, marjoram, oregano,
parsley, sage, savory, tarragon,
Tomato soups: basil, bay
leaf, chives, garlic, oregano, parsley, rosemary, savory, tarragon, thyme
Vegetable soups: basil,
caraway, cayenne, chives, dill, garlic, marjoram, nutmeg, oregano, savory,
And don't forget soup-enhancing seasonings at the table — soy Bac'Uns and Tac'Os make
great additions at the table to sprinkle on a bowl of potato, bean or creamy
soups. And try toasted sesame
seeds on Asian or vegetable soups.
Frontier and Simply Organic also offer several
spice blends, each with its own unique flavor. Blends most suitable for soups
Seasoning (no salt), Italian
Seasoning, and Onion
Of course, all-purpose and ethnic
blends, like Dash
O'Dill and Italian
Seasoning are always good bets, too.
Nothing beats the ease and
simplicity of Frontier dried soup mixes, broth powders, dehydrated vegetables,
and prepared blended seasonings to get a pot of soup on and off the stove in
just minutes. By keeping a few key Frontier ingredients on hand, you can create
soups that meet a variety of mealtime needs. Below are some ingredients to
consider, as well as some tips for successful soup cookery.
Broth Powders and Soup
Frontier's product line includes a
wide variety of broth powders (beef-flavored, chicken-flavored, vegetable, and
low-sodium vegetable) that can serve as the foundation for any number of quick
and delicious soups. Start with one teaspoon of broth per cup of water, and
increase the amount for a stronger-flavored stock. When your recipe calls for a
base such as water, or chicken, beef or potato broth, these will substitute
Instant Soup Mixes
Cheddar Cheese, Chili , Cream of
Chickenless, Cream of Mushroom, Onion, and Tomato provide a half dozen quick
fixes for those days when there's just no time to cook. Enjoy these on their
own, or add additional ingredients and use them as your soup base.
To make a quick and easy soup base
for hearty bean or Mexican-type soups, just add water or broth to Frontier
Pinto Bean Flakes or Black Bean Flakes. Or use Refried Pinto Bean Mix or Fiesta
Black Bean Mix to get a head start on your soup seasonings.
Dried vegetables are perfect for
soup-making. Onion and garlic flakes, celery flakes, and diced carrots are
perhaps the most commonly used, but others well worth trying are green beans,
bell peppers, mushrooms, cabbage, corn, peas, potatoes, spinach flakes, tomato
flakes, and a variety of dried chiles. Frontier also offers three special dried
soup blends, including Soup Vegetables, Hearty Stew Vegetables, and Deluxe Soup
Vegetables, all of which provide a nice shortcut when time is limited.
It's easy to cook with dried
vegetables — just keep in mind that one-half cup of dried vegetables equates
to one cup of fresh. Allow the dried vegetables to reconstitute in your
stock before adding sweeteners, salt, or spices, as these additions will
hinder the absorption process.
the "Oh, no!"
Even the most experienced cooks
sometimes ruin a soup. (Little interruptions and distractions may mean
that the soup pot isn't watched as closely as it should be!) Thick soups,
particularly the creamy varieties, are more prone to stovetop disaster
than broth-based varieties. If the smoke alarm is wailing, it's probably
best to just go ahead and order pizza—but if you catch it in time,
your meal can often be salvaged. Here's how:
If the soup has started to burn,
immediately transfer it to another soup pot. Keep whatever pours out freely; do
not try to rescue ingredients that don't voluntarily leave the bottom of the
original pot. If the soup you've salvaged has a distinct burnt flavor, you can
try disguising it by adding another smoky-flavored ingredient, like bacon or
ham; adding chunks of potatoes to absorb some of the burnt taste (remove the
potatoes before serving); or by using small amounts of different seasonings to
mask the flavor. When it's time to clean that burned pot, scrape out what you
can, then sprinkle the bottom of the pot with baking soda. Add an inch or so of
water and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat remove the pot from the burner and
let soak. Clean-up will be much easier.
Too much salt? Try the potato
rescue again. Peel a potato, cut it into large chunks, and toss it in. The
potato, which should be removed before serving, will absorb much of the salt.
Dairy products such as milk or yogurt will also help reduce the salty flavor.
If you've added too much of something else, adding more broth or other liquid
should help tame the flavor.
too watery? Depending on the soup and your tastes, add bean flakes (pinto bean
or black bean) seasonings (onion, parsley or celery flakes), dried vegetables
(carrots, bell peppers, tomato or spinach) or vegetable powders (beet, tomato,
carrot and spinach) to help thicken it.
Getting Started (recipes and tips)
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Broth Powders and Soup Mixes
Soup & Chili Recipes