Since we've covered how to make homemade veggie stock and how to store it for later, storing soup is the next logical topic up for discussion. Here's what you need to know in order to freeze homemade soups and have 'em still taste great when the time is right:
- Almost any soup can be successfully frozen and enjoyed at a later date.
- Just like homemade stocks, soups will keep in the freezer about 6 months.
- Under-salt your soup a bit because saltier items take longer to freeze. Just remember to salt your soup to taste upon reheating.
- If your soup has veggies in it, undercook them a little so they finish cooking, without getting mushy, upon reheating.
- If your recipe calls for soy or nut milk, soy yogurt, or any nondairy dairy-type ingredient, hold off on adding it until the soup is thawed and reheated.
- The same goes for carbs like taters, pastas, and rice. These items will get all mushy while frozen. Instead, add them when the soup is thawed and reheated. As an aside, the same is true for longer stints in the fridge.
- If you are leaving any ingredients out per the above guidelines, be sure to add that information to your label. (See below for example.)
- Adhere to all the general recommendations listed in yesterday's post on storing homemade stocks. (Clean containers, labels, headroom, chill before freezing, thawing guidelines, etc.)
So, let's say I want to freeze some Chickpea Noodle Soup from 'Nomicon. And why wouldn't I? It's like The Bestest Soup Evar when you've got the sniffles and it's cold outside. Or when you're just feelin' down. Whenever, really. It's phenomenal. I would undercook the veggies by a couple minutes, withhold the soba noodles, and cut off the last 15 minutes of cooking. I'd then allow the soup to come to room temperature, chill it in the fridge, and then store it in the freezer. My label for the soup would look something like this:
Chickpea Noodle Soup
Use by: ??/??/????
Thaw and bring to boil. Once the broth is boiling, break 6 ounces soba noodles into thirds and throw them in. Lower the heat to medium so that the soup is at a low boil. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.