How to make fabulous soup the easy way - in a blender
You don't need to spend hours at the stove to prepare delicious home-made soups. Here's how to do it with almost no effort at all.
By April Jones (Kitchen Blender Reviews)
Photo © Kitchen Blender Reviews
Before I knew better, making home-made soups always involved vegetables and spices simmering all day in a big pot on the stove. Not anymore. Fresh veggies, a few spices and some hot water tossed in a blender will offer some of the best tasting soup you can imagine. When I discovered how easy it was, I was pleasantly surprised at the new avenue this opened up for me - and for my blender.
By preparing soups in a blender, you can create a fast and simple vegan or vegetarian meal. Just be sure you have a blender that has enough horsepower to blend continuously for three to five minutes on high speed. If your blender doesn't have that power, chances are good you'll experience motor burnout and your dreams of homemade soup for lunch will be a distant memory. Your blender, too.
When I bought my high-powered blender I knew I would often use it to make smoothies and ice cream, and for mixing batters. But I had no idea how often I would use it for making soups. Preparing soups wasn't a priority for me. It wasn't until I saw a live demo that the light went on. Within minutes, I had tasted a sample of soup I would be proud to make at home.
Plenty of power
Blenders such as Blendtec and Vitamix are excellent for preparing soups, and it's a strong selling point for each. I'm sure there are others that will also handle the task. Just make sure they have enough power, as well as a high-capacity pitcher to hold enough of the ingredients to make soup for everyone . If you're seriously considering a new blender, I suggest you check out the Blendtec and Vitamix ranges. They're pricey, but they both have a reputation for durability and will allow you to prepare things in the kitchen that you have never considered before (like almond milk).
Blender clean-up is a snap: just a little squirt of dishwashing liquid and some hot water will do the trick. Blend at high speed for about thirty seconds, and your blender will be squeaky clean. What could be easier?
One of the coolest things about making soups in your blender is that you control all of the ingredients that are making their way into your body. No additives. No preservatives. You can control the amount of salt, too, and I suggest adding the salt at the end of the process. Taste. Add a little more, if needed. Trust me - your body will thank you.
Some soups made in the blender could be considered 'raw' soups. That's because the temperature stays low and no real cooking is required to soften the veggies, since they are blended to bits. The warm water and heat from the friction of the blade will not heat the soup enough to break down the beneficial enzymes in your ingredients. Enzyme breakdown occurs at 118°F (about 48°C). I don't know about you, but I want all of the good stuff going into my body.
By contrast, pumpkin soup should be prepared on the stove, with the ingredients added to your blender after cooking. Just be careful, though, because if you add the ingredients while they're boiling hot, the steam won't feel so great on your bare skin.
It's so easy
Photo © Kitchen Blender Reviews
Here is my all-time favorite vegan soup recipe. Give it a try and see how easy it is.
- 1 or 2 medium tomatoes
- ½ stalk celery
- 4 to 6 baby carrots
- 1 tbsp. dried onion flakes
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- 1 small ring of jalapeno
- 2 tbsp. taco seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups (16 fl oz, 480 ml) hot water
Toss everything into your blender and blend well. To add a little texture, add a handful of tortilla chips and a can of pinto or black beans that have been drained and rinsed. Add these after the other ingredients have been blended. Pulse the blender a few times and you're good to go.
I enjoy preparing food with my children, and preparing home-made soup in the blender gets them involved. They pick out the veggies, and they measure and chop the ingredients. The blending part is fun for them - and, without their knowing it, they will use their new-found kitchen skills for the rest of their lives. Not to mention the fact that it brings the family together to eat fun, healthy meals.
What more can you ask for in a small kitchen appliance?
April Jones is the publisher of Kitchen-Blender-Reviews.com. She has a passion for eating healthy foods and teaching families how to eat healthily. On her site she has collected an assortment of blender-friendly vegetarian and vegan recipes. Check out her site and find the right blender or recipe for you and your family.
Please note: Neither Veg World nor its contributors are qualified to give medical or nutritional advice. If in doubt, always consult a suitably-qualified professional.