Of course, we are talking about real, tasty, good-quality Soups. Soups quite easily reduced to the level of primitive and tasteless meals, if they are prepared without adequate training and, more importantly, without an understanding of their specific properties. It is noticed, that to cook delicious soup for many chefs are more difficult than any sophisticated dish.
Therefore, in most cases, soups cooked in a slipshod manner – why bother when a good result anyway not easy to achieve: very often in the dining room and the house soups become the most tasteless, unappetizing food. They are eaten because “we need to eat soup”, “need to eat something hot”, “winter always need to eat the soup,” and other similar reasons, which are very far from the taste evaluation. And we are so used to it that our banquets, gatherings, dinner parties, birthdays and other occasions usually goes without soups. They are not serving, because the food is “too simple”, and offer either appetizer or snack and hot, so-called “main course”. Meanwhile, cooked according to the rules and with a high degree of skill soup – is a table decoration and really first dish.
But to cook a good soup – is a great art, which requires special attention and time. The main thing is that to cook soups of high quality is more difficult than all the other dishes, because of a variety of circumstances.
Briefly about the circumstances
First, soups gets better than a lesser extent they are cooking. It is best to cook the soup for no more than 6 – 10 servings at a time, that is, in a saucepan to a maximum of 10 liters. Hence, homemade soup, cooked for 3 – 5 people is preferable of any other.
Second, crockery for soup should always be faience, porcelain, stone or enamel, but not metallic without the any coating. Thus, matters not only material, coating and protection of the inner surface of the dish, but also its thickness, and hence its heat capacity and thermal conductivity. The slower and quieter boiling soup, so it tastes better.
Third, the ratio of water and other products in soups must be exactly balanced. By the end of cooking, the amount of liquid per serving should not exceed 350 – 400 cubic centimeters or milliliters. And minimum 200 – 250 milliliters per serving. At the same time, during cooking, liquid cannot be drained, or added, because it significantly affect the taste. But precisely this condition is almost never observed either in catering or in the household. Properly balancing the amount of water and other products in the soup is necessary before start of cooking, considering how much water will boil away in the cooking process.
Six rules you need to know
1. Soups require high freshness of all products and careful handling, removal of all defects by cleaning, cutting, scraping. Products for the soup should not only wash the dirt from the outside, but from odor that not everyone is able and willing to do. Cutting should be conducted carefully, so that each piece of meat, fish, vegetable, intended for soup, must be fully pre-cleaned, washed and dried.
2. When cutting food, should be strictly adhered to a form of cutting, which is characteristic for this soup, because it affects the taste. This means that in a one kind of soup should be added the whole onion and chopped into another; in one soup should be added a whole carrot, into other – diced or halved. This is not a decorative external differences, but the requirements dictated by the taste and the appointment of soup.
3. The addition of products to the soup should be done in a certain order, so that none of the components are not digested and that the whole soup is not boiling too long, and keep up to a time when cooked all of its components. To do this, the cook should know and remember the cooking time of each product and each component.
4. Soup should be always salted in the end of cooking, but not too late, at a time when the major products in it just cooked but not yet digested and able to absorb the salt evenly. If the soup is salted too early, even when the products are hard, then it is cooked long and becomes too salty, as the salt mostly remains in the liquid, and if salted too late, then it becomes salty (liquid) and tasteless (thick).
5. During soup cooking you must constantly monitor it, do not give it boil over, often tasting, correcting mistakes in time, watching the changing taste of broth, with the consistence of meat, fish and vegetables. That is why the soup is an uncomfortable dish for cooks, because he does not let go away for a minute. In the home, and in the restaurant that is often neglected in practice, leaving the soup to its fate. A good cook is not considered with time, cooking the soup and knowing that these “losses” will be repaid with excellent quality.
6. The most crucial moment comes after the soup mostly cooked, salted and left just a few minutes – from 3 to 7 – to its full readiness. During this time, it is necessary, said the cook-practices “to bring the soup to taste” – give it flavor, odor, piquancy, depending on the type and requirements of the recipe, as well as individual cook skills, from his personal taste and desires. Usually, this final operation cannot please everyone, and just at this point the soup can be thoroughly spoiled. Meanwhile, a cook with refined taste during this final moment, bringing a variety of seasonings, spices, can turn a seemingly mediocre soup into a masterpiece.
Finally, the soup is ready and removed from heat, but then, the real chef does not hurry to serve it on the table. He will pour it in a tureen, let it brew under the cover of 7 to 20 minutes, so the spices and salt evenly penetrated into the meat or other ingredients and the liquid part of the soup was not watery, but have acquired a nice thickish texture. This soup has a strong flavor, tenderness, softness, proper temperature, and therefore well perceived by organs of touch, smell and digestion.