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The Best Spices for Soup

Nadia Galinova
Translated by
Nadia Galinova
Clear soup

When we prepare soups and hesitate about which spice to add to which soup, we often panic and don't wan't to make any mistakes. Generally speaking, there's no chance of this happening if you just add as much salt and black pepper as you like, but if you have other spices available, especially if they're fresh, it's good to add some extra flavor to what you're cooking. Here are some guidelines on which spices go with which soups:

Parsley and lemon juice are usually added to chicken soup, but these can be replaced with savory herb or vinegar. If you have celery roots and parsnips, you can easily chop them into small pieces and throw them in while the chicken is boiling.

They release their aroma during the boiling process, unlike fresh parsley and savory herb, which are recommended to be added at the end. All of this also applies to turkey soups and rabbit meat soups.

If you are making chicken soup according to a Mediterranean recipe, you may also encounter spices such as oregano, basil and thyme. They are usually added shortly before the soup is ready and are preferably fresh.

All the spices that we usually add to chicken soup can be added to the pork soup. It also goes very well with a clove of garlic, a bay leaf and grated dry pepper, which can be hot if you like spicy food. Here is the time to mention, that the bay leaf is added at the beginning of cooking the soup and not at the end, unlike most spices.

In addition to the traditional spices, leafy vegetables such as spinach, dock, nettles, etc. are often added to lamb soup. Most cooks prepare lamb soup with an egg and yogurt thickener.

If you have decided to make an aromatic fish soup, keep in mind, that in most fishing villages, the locals also add lovage to it.

Bean soup

For bean soup and lentil soup, it is best to add mint.

If you're making okra or green bean soup, you can't go wrong with a whole bunch of finely chopped dill.

You can approach the lean soups with more creativity and even some of them go well with cumin. The standard option remains dill and parsley. Remember, however, that when cooking lean soups, it is best to add some fat, preferably butter or olive oil.

Boiled beef is seasoned traditionally with celery, peppercorns and parsley.