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How to jazz up your soup

The cold winters make you want to snuggle up in a blanket and sip on something piping hot. And with the common flu running rampant this time around, chances are that you have no option. Whatever be the reason, the weather calls for steamy soups. But if the thought of this food item makes you wince and conjure unappetising horrors, we have a couple of solutions for you. Here are some simple ways to jazz up your simple soup…

Add a little tadka

We all know by now that a little bit of fat is healthy for our system. When that ups the taste quotient, then nothing like it! Just like with your dals and sambhars, you can add a bit of tadka to your soup as well. Depending upon your palette preference, you can do a jeera and hing combination or mustard seeds, curry leaves and red chillies for that South Indian twist.

Chat masala to the rescue

The super savoury chaat masala not only makes a great sprinkling for your snacks and salads but can be topped on your soup as well. The chatpata taste can add that much-needed zing and make any drab soup into a fab one. Because let’s face it, as much as healthy the soups are, they do need that little bit of extra to be more palatable.

Use roasted vegetables

Here is a gourmet truth, along with the ingredient that defines the taste, how you cook it matters too. Be it boiled, baked, fried or roasted – each technique brings its own flavour. So, for a slight smokey twist, roast your vegetables instead of simply boiling them. When it is still warm, add water and give it a good whisk. This especially works well with potato, carrot, sweet potato, pumpkin, broccoli and the likes. You might have to take that extra effort, but it will be well worth it.

Sprinkling of farsan

If you are not on a super strict diet and do not faint at the thought of putting deep-fried crunchies into your soup, then this is for you. Bring in that tea-time delight into your dish for that perfect balance of textures and taste. This is a great way to get your fussy kids to enjoy it too!

Tips from the experts:

Chef Reetu Uday Kugaji, Celebrity Chef, Culinary Expert, Mentor, Food Blogger, Hospitality and Food Consultant

  • Think of a soup such as pumpkin one that would be bland without any herbs or spices added to it. You may top/garnish it with lightly toasted pepitas, melon seeds, fresh cream and a dash of spicy harissa. Drizzle it with chilli oil and top it with crispy cilantro.
  • Fresh herbs aren’t used as a garnish. When added in a warm soup, it releases essential oils that bring about a soothing aroma. Add fresh herbs just before serving because they will lose their aromatic properties very quickly.
  • Croutons can do wonders, especially if they are herbed or multigrain croutons.
  • Choose fresh stock.
  • Add freshly toasted and ground pepper to make the soup more palatable.
  • Stir in fresh cream to give a creamy texture to the soup and make it more flavourful.
  • Drizzle grated cheese to give your dish a perfect flavour, tanginess and texture.
  • Add toasted nuts for a crunchy texture as well as better taste.
  • Add paprika to impart a smoky flavour.
  • Instead of adding the regular salt, sprinkle garlic salt.
  • Drizzle it with flavoured oil/cream, for example, roasted-garlic oil, herb-infused oil or chive sour cream.

Chef Chaitra S, Food Influencer who has appeared on various cooking platforms on National Television

  • Adding pepper to your soup not just enhances the flavour but also keeps the body warm and in good condition.
  • Turmeric is a taste enhancer as well as an infused ayurvedic powerhouse which is healthy for your system.
  • Drizzle honey to the soup if needed as it brings in that hint of sweetness and acts as a therapeutic agent.

Chef Megha Bhaskar who is working at Star Suvarna Kitchen Durbar and has appeared on various cooking platforms on National Television

  • Rock salt or black salt is a better substitute than sea salt in your soups.
  • Adding ghee not only enhances the aroma and flavour but also keeps your body warm and reduces infections.
  • Lemon is a power-packed resource which augments the taste but also invigorates the body. Ensure you add a dash of lemon juice to your soup before consumption.

Now whoever said that a bowl of soup is boring! Take to these tips and whip up a delectable storm.

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