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Soup Made in Advance

Asked by andrea.moraghan. Answered on 10th April 2012

Full question

Can I make Pea & Garlic soup a day in advance? I'm having dinner party - would be great to get some advance prep done! Many thanks Andrea.

Our answer

Nigella's Pea and Garlic Soup appears in a book by Nigel Salter. It could be made in advance though the biggest risk is that you loose the vibrant green colour of the peas. To minimize this it would be best to cook the peas only briefly then drain and immediately rinse them with lots of cold water to help to "set" the green colour. When you reheat the soup do it over a gentle heat until it is just piping hot, as cooking for too long could cause the colour to turn slightly olive (though it will not affect the flavour).

Most soups can be made in advance, and even frozen. If you are making a soup which contains previously cooked meat, such as pea and ham soup or chicken noodle soup, then it is best to make the soup base and cool and chill it before adding the shreds of meat. This will reduce the risk of the meat being reheated and cooled too many times. Soups made in advance should be reheated until they are piping hot. If you freeze potato based soups then you may notice that the soup looks a little grainy or "split" when it thaws. This is quite common and the soup in most cases should re-emulsify as it heats up. Bring it just up to boiling point, stirring it regularly, until it is smooth.

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