If you make a lot of soup at home, or plan to do so in the future, you’ve probably seen automatic soup makers and larger soup kettles in the stores and wondered if they’re for you.
The answer isn’t clear cut, so today let’s dive into what you might want to give some thought to in considering which path you might like to pursue.
Traditional ‘Manual’ Soup Making
By manual soup making, we’re talking about the preparation of ingredients by hand, and cooking them together in a suitable soup pan.
In that sense, the recipe you’re following is somewhat irrelevant, it’s the methodology that varies in putting it all together and cooking it up.
For effective traditional soup making, you’ll need a good set of chopping boards and kitchen knives, so that you can make easy work of the preparation of raw foods. Chopping to the appropriate size for cooking is clearly easier when you’re working with sharp knives and have plenty of chopping shape available.
In other words, as with all cooking, being prepared, having access to the right tools and having clear work areas really helps before you start making soups.
‘Automatic’ Soup Makers
On the other hand, you can now buy the gadgets to to the heavy lifting when cooking soup. Admittedly, while they all broadly make similar claims about making soup for you, what they do and how effectively they do it does vary considerably between the different soup makers on the market.
There are plenty of websites out there to help you with getting the best soup maker deals, but remember it’s more about getting the machine that carries out all the functions you’re looking for than the price tag. Of course, we all have budgets to stick to, but if you can’t stretch to the model you need, it’s probably worth considering carefully whether it’s worth buying an electronic soup kettle in the first place.
Which Is Better For Results?
All too often, gadgets arrive in stores making outlandish claims about how amazing they are, and the reality isn’t quite so magical.
Soup is something that when it’s really good, it is very impressive. Poor soups can be rather unpalatable too at the other end of the spectrum. While it’s true to say that some automatic soup makers are much better than others, it’s also true to say that there’s a bigger differentiator at play.
Buying good ingredients can make the biggest difference, especially when it comes to fresh ingredients. Vegetables are greatest when they’re new, although soups can also be used to whizz up older produce rather than wasting it by throwing it away.
Clearly, fresh meats and vegetables will get better results than those at the limits of their life in terms of remaining edible. While we’d never suggest using ingredients that are no longer fit for consumption, trying different soup recipes with older items will help you to get a feel for what works best and which soup types you enjoy most, as well as those that you’re not so keen on!
Ultimately, the balance between using a soup maker or doing everything by hand will come down to personal preference. If time is tight, gadgets can relieve some pressure, but at the same time can’t fully replace the creativity of human hands.