If you are looking to start making soup, you can go the old school way and do pots and pans or use some modern-day technology to make your life easier.
Soup makers or soup machines make the cooking experience more straightforward. Regardless of the type of soup, you are going for a well-built soup maker that will get the job done. Using a soup maker is as simple as adding your ingredients and setting a soup cycle. This is followed by serving, seeing that you do not have to sit and watch it cook.
In this piece, we will give you a detailed step-by-step guide on how to use a soup maker, so read on.
Where to Start
Now that your brand-new soup marker has just arrived, it is time to get started. But before you do, there are a couple of things we need to get out of the way.
These may vary in different soup maker models, but they are generally the way to go.
The Manufacturer’s Instruction Manual
Like all other appliances, before you start cleaning it before use, it is best to read the instruction manual included with your soup maker.
This will give you a better understanding of the soup maker’s features and the dos and don’ts. It may also contain a few soup maker recipes that can be made using your new kitchen appliance.
Instruction manuals also help flatten the learning curve if it is your first time working with a soup maker.
Your Supplies and Ingredients
Whether you choose to follow any recipe from the internet or one that you know by heart, or even if you are making things up as you go, you need a good supply of ingredients to get your soup going.
Once you have all your ingredients, wash all your vegetables thoroughly before use.
This is because fresh produce is contaminated with germs and bacteria from the farm and other contaminants found at the shops.
When it comes to supplies, you need a couple of things. These materials include:
- A chopping board
- A knife
- A spoon or ladle
- A spatula
Step-by-step Guide on Using a Soup Maker
This is a simple tutorial on how to use a soup maker. It is not specific to any make or brand, but it will prove useful for most of these machines.
Before following this guide, make sure to read the instruction manual that comes with your soup maker.
Step 1: Chop or Dice the Ingredients
Before putting your soup-making ingredients into the soup maker, you need to have them in small pieces. To do this, you need to either chop or dice these ingredients.
The size of your diced and or chopped ingredients will depend on your preference, whether you want a chunky soup or a small soup.
If you are going for a smooth and fine soup, you should consider blending some of your ingredients. When chopping and dicing, make sure to have all the ingredients in the same size.
This is to allow for even cooking as well as presentability when serving.
Step 2: Sauté All the Ingredients
Nobody likes bland food, so why should your soup be bland?
While sauteing your soup ingredients is optional, it does serve as a very important step in the soup making process. Whenever you sauté your ingredients, it allows for the different flavours to blend seamlessly.
Different meats and vegetables may require sauteing to release their flavours. Some machines, like the Morphy Richards Soup Maker, come with an inbuilt sauté function.
This means you do not need a pan to sauté your ingredients first before putting them in the soup maker.
When sauteing your ingredients, remember to use just enough oil. You do not want your soup to become oily.
Oils like olive oil, canola oil, or rapeseed oil are ideal because they do not take away from the food’s flavour.
When sauteing, make sure to do it until the flavour is released from the ingredients. Do not let them cook.
Step 3: Place Your Chopped and Sautéed Ingredients Into the Soup Maker
Now, it is time to add all your ingredients to your soap maker.
When adding them, pay close attention to the fill lines to avoid overfilling the soup maker, which might cause spillage. Most, if not all, soup makers have a marked fill line.
With all your ingredients in the soup maker, it is time to add the stock. When doing this, pay close attention to the minimum and maximum fill levels outlined in or on the soup maker.
When adding the stock, you can also take this time to sprinkle the spices and salt. Do not add too many spices or salt. This is because as the soup cooks, the flavours will intensify.
Step 4: Securing the Lid and Setting the Timer
Now that you have all your contents in the soup maker, it is time to do the less tasking test. This is to close off the lid and set the timer on the soup maker.
Soups come as smooth or chunky. The consistency of a soup will determine how long it will cook. Most recipes call for 30 minutes of cooking time or a cooking cycle. You can have it go for longer, depending on the recipe or the amount of soup you are cooking.
Step 5: Tasting and Serving
Once the cooking cycle is complete, almost all soup makers will automatically turn themselves off. If not, you should turn it off.
Taste your soup and ensure that all the flavours are balanced. And if you are going for chunky broth, ensure that your ingredients are cooked.
Add a few minutes to the soup maker and cook it to suit your taste if they are not. Once your soup is done and you have tasted it, it is time to serve.
Using a ladle or spoon, scoop the soup maker contents and put them into a serving dish or a bowl. Garnish your soup and serve.
Step 6: Washing Your Soup Maker
With your soup ready and served, you should now clean your soup maker. Do this to ensure proper maintenance and increase its longevity.
Before cleaning it, make sure it is fully cooled down and almost cold to the touch. Unplug it from the power outlet, and run it under water to clean it. Be careful not to get any water in its electrical parts.
You might want to use mild dish soap and a non-scouring washing pad to wash the inside of the soup maker.
If it comes with detachable parts, make sure to read the manual to see if they are dishwasher safe before putting them in one. Otherwise, hand washing is the way to go. Allow it to completely dry before storing it away.
Soup Maker Tips and Tricks
Whether you’re looking forward to making tomato soup, lentil soup, mushroom soup or any other soup, here are the top tips and tricks that will make the entire process a breeze.
- Never open the lid when the soup maker is cooking.
- Sauteing vegetables adds more flavour to your soup.
- Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for four days in an airtight container. It can also be frozen for 4 to 6 months alongside other meals.
- Leftover meats or precooked meat save you the trouble of precooking before making your soup.
- The vegetables and meats always go before the stock.
- Always clean your soup maker after using it.
- If you do not like sauteing your ingredients, you can always sweat them before making soup, but include onions to make them more flavourful.
- If you are looking to add stock or water to your soup, make sure it is hot so that it doesn’t lower the temperature of the already cooking soup content. Hot stock and very hot liquid balance out the soup.
- When blending your soup in the soup maker, be careful with the pulse function. It might be a little bit more powerful than you might anticipate.
- Frozen foods damage the blades of the blender and take longer to cook. Make sure all ingredients are fully thawed.
- Not all vegetables cook the same. Some might take longer than others to fully cook.
Frequently Asked Questions About Soup Makers
There is no doubt that a step-by-step guide gives you a proper understanding of using a soup maker.
Most people still have several questions about soap makers. This section will answer some of the most frequently asked soup maker questions.
Are all soup makers the same?
A soup maker is a combination of a blender and a saucepan. This means it can cook and blend your soup without emptying its contents. However, not all soup makers have both functions.
Some come in the form of kettle-style or blender style. The kettle style soup maker is a kettle-shaped soup maker that you cannot see the inside of when the soup is cooking.
A blender-style soup maker has blades at the bottom that blend the soup content once cooked.
Most blender soup makers come with a sauté function that allows you to sauté your ingredients before cooking your soup.
Can a regular soup recipe be converted into a soup maker recipe?
Any soup is a soup maker recipe soup. The only thing you have to look out for is the amount of soup you can make in your soup maker.
Regardless of the recipe, soup makers can handle it. This includes shop-bought soup.
Can you make smoothies or cold soups in a soup maker?
Yes, you can. Most soup makers on the market today come with a blending function that allows you to blend your ingredients without heat.
This can prove handy when it comes to cold soups and smoothies. When using soup makers, the sky is the limit. So, if you are looking to try making cantaloupe or gazpacho soups in your soup maker, go ahead.
Can one put raw meat in a soup maker?
Yes, only if your soup maker comes with a sauté function. All meats should be precooked before adding them to the soup maker to avoid contamination.
Meats naturally have bacteria and germs. Precooking the meat will make it safe for consumption.
Can you use frozen ingredients in a soup maker?
The answer to this question is yes. However, it is not recommended to add frozen ingredients to the soup maker and blend them.
This is because these ingredients may damage the blades. A good point to remember is that frozen items will take longer to cook than fresh ones.
How small should the ingredients be diced or chopped?
When it comes to soup makers, small chunks are better. This is because the smaller the ingredients, the faster the cooking time.
When you are chopping or dicing your ingredients, try to ensure that the size of the ingredients is equal or close. This is to allow for even cooking.
How do you fix soup that is too thick or too thin?
Sometimes even after following the recipe to the T, something might go wrong somewhere along the way.
It means the soup may either be too thin or too thick. If your soup is too thin, you can consider adding potatoes or beans. Beans and potatoes soak up the extra liquid.
You can also consider adding corn starch to the soup to thicken it. Scooping excess stock from the soup and letting the rest simmer also allows it to thicken.
If the soup turns out too thick, adding extra stock or water should have it fixed. When adding the stock or water, give the soup a good stir to allow the stock or water to integrate with the soup.
Is there a specific stock that should be used?
You can use any stock of your choice. You can also opt for water in place of stock. If you are using thick stock or pureed tomatoes, you should add water to avoid burning the soup.
What is the minimum amount of soup a soup maker can make?
Every soup maker has a minimum and maximum fill level indicator. These are important in determining what the least amount of soup you can make is and what the max is.
This varies from model to model, meaning there is no standard figure when it comes to the amount of soup one can make. Make sure not to fill the soup maker past the maximum guidelines or below the minimum level.
Getting Started With Your Veg Soup
Now that you know how to use a soup maker, it is time to test your newly earned knowledge. Remember to read the manufacturer’s instructions before you start using your soup maker. Also, do not limit your soup recipes. With a soup maker, you are free to experiment with any soup recipe, including smoothies and juices.
To ensure that your soup maker serves you for a long time, don’t forget to always clean it properly and store it in a safe place away from dust and moisture.
With a soup maker, your possibilities are endless, have fun utilising your soup maker fully.