Monday, June 18, 2012

How to Thicken a Too-Watery Vegetable Soup, Using Potatoes

I made a zucchini (summer squash, really) soup the other day and followed the technique I use for most puréed vegetable soups, including the asparagus, carrot and potato-leek soups I've previously written about.

However, in this case, I messed up and added too much water to the pot after building the soup's base (sweated—not browned—onions, garlic and various types of zucchini). After 30 minutes of simmering and after using a hand-held immersion blender to purée the mixture, I was left with a watery mess that was less than palatable.

What to do to thicken the soup? I went to the market and bought a handful of small Yukon Gold potatoes, which I cut and boiled in water until they were soft. I added the potatoes to the zucchini soup and used the immersion blender again. As hoped, the cooked potatoes thickened the mixture as needed. (Thinking about it, I could have cooked the potatoes in the zucchini soup.)

Just to be safe, I think I'll always have potatoes on hand whenever I make a puréed vegetable soup. Either that or add the correct amount of water.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Reading your recipes has inspired me to experiment more with my own and I recently made a delicious potato-leek-asparagus soup. Generally used the same techniques you have outlined, but added just the bottom stems of asparagus I had snapped off the stalks we ate the night before. I used a knife to determine where they stopped being truly "woody" and found I could salvage an inch or two of still-edible stalk, sliced those thinly and sauteed them with the other vegetables. I do not use store bought stock anymore, something I learned from your blog.

While on the thrifty mode, here's something my husband discovered yesterday: while making egg salad, he found we had no celery - so he took off the stems of some young collard greens we did have, chopped them and added to the eggs and mayo. He said they were a worthy substitute and a little "peppery" to boot!