The Devotional Chef

Home of God & Good Food

Chef Podcast 1.06: Soup!

We know that the Devotional Chef has a certain amount of reverence not only for God, but for the meals he makes as well. The man LOVES to cook, and that love may come out even more in this podcast than in the others we have done to date. It’s a longer and more detailed show. You might not think that prior to listening, but soup is a priority for the Chef – and we can attribute this to the extreme flexibility of possibilities for soup STOCK, which is the principal ingredient of any soup. Here he goes into step-by-step details on creation of stock for various types of soup (though in this case he returns frequently to Vegetable Beef Soup with Pasta, one of his favorites).

If you listen to the podcast, you will have a strategy for just about any soup you care to make. The LINK IS RIGHT HERE.

Before we get into some of the critical notes from this podcast, we want to remind you to check out DevotionalChef on Twitter, because the Chef is beginning to become aggressive on Twitter about drawing out “JR” Jim Ross for a BBQ showdown!

The Chef, being from Louisiana as he is, will tend to focus on broth ingredients suitable for Cajun or Creole-based recipes, though he recognizes the regional effects of where you live on any cooking, never mind for a dish such as soup, which is more than average region-dependent. Terms such as mirepoix (root vegetables) and bouquetgarni (desired spices) are introduced wherever there is French-derived cooking as is true in this case.

Stock is a powerful agent in the creation of soup, because the same stock, created in large enough quantities and stored properly, can be used in a number of different soups. Here are a couple of examples we found:

This first is a beef/chicken stock with root vegetables used for (among other things) pho. Per Cook My Mind, which has extra cooking instructions and definitions of terms.
And this is the beginning of a seafood stock that could also be used for (among other things) a crab boil. The photo was available on Creative Commons.

Here are some tips on the preparation of stock:

  • Beef: use some bones with a little meat and/or marrow, and perhaps grill it up on the stove top, or roast it in the oven, before soaking in the soup pot, to help release the meat flavor inside the bones – the flavor is in the fat, and the marrow.
  • Seafood: while we want to use bones of fish and shells of shellfish to release flavor into the broth, we will want those shells and bones fished out (pardon the expression) before adding other ingredients.
  • Root Vegetables (also referred to as mirepoix): there’s something about root vegetables (e.g. carrots, onions, potatoes, even parsnips) that adds thickness and richness to the stock; you want those vegetables to simmer until they are tender; veggies with a stronger taste (e.g. parsnips) will benefit from some roasting prior to simmering to bring out flavors that are other than bitter.

    root-veggie-soup.jpgYou can also make a very nice root vegetable soup by running the veggies through a blender before completing the simmer. There is a recipe just for this purpose HERE. The instructions, and this photo, come from She Likes Food.

  • Spices (also referred to as bouquetgarni): you can get by with salt and pepper alone, maybe a little bouillon (though you must watch for having too much salt and remember, you can’t get it back out easily), though Dr. Ron does love his garlic (grill that just a little to help release flavors prior to entering the pot)! Once the spices are in the pot, we move from cooking to simmering – usually 20 to 30 minutes will do it.
  • Non-root Vegetables: the Chef tends to go with frozen bags of mixed vegetables and dumping them in with about 30 minutes of simmer left to go. Be careful not to let those veggies simmer too long and go wimpy on you!

As is often the case in Devotional Chef recipes, and certainly here: Cook smarter, not harder. There are no rewards for working harder in this recipe. For instance, there are canned broths in your favorite grocery store, and even bouillon cubes, to lend flavor to stock. As is the case in any recipe, if you work with bouillon, be sure to go easy on the salt.

Once the stock is done, you can use it to make a soup by adding the ingredients peculiar to the particular soup. For the Chef’s Beef Vegetable Pasta Soup, you’d add crumbled grilled hamburger meat, garlic and tomato sauce/crushed tomatoes, etc. and throw in your favorite pasta at the end of simmer for a few minutes. Yum!

There is a recipe for Beef Vegetable Pasta Soup in the new Devotional Chef Cookbook, which is currently under construction. We are rewriting the book to include new recipes and new devotionals. It’ll be a cookbook you’ll want to add to your kitchen, and it will be ready soon so stay tuned!


About Dr. Ron Graham

Engineer by training; customer service by circumstance; entrepreneur by desire.

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This entry was posted on June 18, 2018 by in Preparation, Thoughts and Insight and tagged , .

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