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can you help me jazz up a soup recipe?

Yesterday I made a Southwestern chicken soup. It was basically chicken broth with onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic, salt and pepper, cilantro,
2 tablespoons lime juice, diced avocado, bits of tomato, white rice, rotisserie chicken and Old Northern beans. The only other seasoning was 1/4 teaspoon of cumin. Before I served it I added an additional 1/4 teaspoon cumin to the soup and a bit more lime juice yet it did not have much of a taste to it, though it looked beautiful. Can you tell me what seasoning you would add to this soup to make it more flavorful without it being overpowering? The last thing that I want is for it to taste like a watered down chicken chili. Thank you so much! Hope you all had a good Thanksgiving.

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  1. I think
    It needs some jalapeƱo, some ancho or other chile, and more salt.

    1. Some chicken bullion (sp?).
      When my chicken based soups need flavor it does the trick. Do that or salt (not both or it will be too much). I find that the bullion gives a punch that salt just doesn't do on it's own.

      Play around with a small bowlful of your soup so if it doesn't give the desired effect the pot won't suffer.

      4 Replies
      1. re: ncghettogourmet

        Agree with the bouillon. Sometimes I will use it if a soup or rice dish just doesn't have enough flavor.

        Also when making Spanish rice, I will add tomato paste instead of fresh tomato or sauce and it gives it a heartier tomato flavor.

        You could try pureeing a charred/roasted fresh pepper and add that. Skin and seed it first.

        Some Mexican oregano.

        1. re: ncghettogourmet

          I agree that it sounds like what's lacking is more chicken flavor, but once I discovered Better than Bouillon bases, I never again considered using bouillon cubes, which are more salt than chicken. BTB is salty too, but a lot more authentic tasting than bouillon cubes. BTB (sold in American supermarkets) also comes in a reduced sodium version, which is still plenty salty but a good alternative for those of us who don't want to use a lot of salt.

          1. re: greygarious

            I strengthen my chicken soup with a little Better than Boullion too, but it does contain a lot of sodium and some sweeteners. I find the beef flavored sort a wash for sodium and sugar. The chicken flavor does impart good chicken flavor, but don't salt the broth after you add it, until you taste it.

            1. re: greygarious

              I use BTB soup base rather than broth most of the time. It has more punch and helps get the needed salt into the soup. I would add some sort of chilis and maybe a small amount of brown sugar unless it is already bordering on being sweet.

          2. I would just add toppings to each serving vs the entire pot.

            Some finely minced red onion, fresh cilantro, lots of black pepper or some hot sauce, a pinch of salt and more fresh lime juice.

            1. I would try a can or two of stewed tomatoes and a healthy amount of Cholula or other similar hot sauce. You could also add just a bit of worcestershire sauce -- not too much. It will add a bit of body and an umami that may help to bind the flavors together. If you can get some Better than Boullion, that adds some good chicken flavor as well. Let us know what you end up doing and how it worked out!!

              1. chilis! That soup is calling for them.