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Old 04-06-2006, 04:55 PM   #11
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Yes it is smarty pants.What Im saying is you dont have to make a separate sauce to thicken soup.Im most likely to put an onion with a few cloves in the milk or cream and possibly add other ingrefients for my bechamel
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Old 04-06-2006, 07:21 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpmcgrew
...you dont have to make a separate sauce to thicken soup.Im most likely to put an onion with a few cloves in the milk or cream and possibly add other ingrefients for my bechamel
You're right. It comes together in the pot.

I haven't tried a lot of different flavorings in bechamel. I'll have to try the onion in there. No cloves, though. Don't like them.
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Old 04-06-2006, 07:47 PM   #13
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To clarify you put a whole onion with the cloves stuck in onion in the milk or cream and warm it up then take it out it adds a very subtle flavor.
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Old 04-06-2006, 08:29 PM   #14
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There are those that insist nutmeg is an essential part of a good Bechemel. But I've never used it. Can't say whether it helps the sauce or not.

I think we need to open a discusion on mother sauces. There are probably as many variations on a simple mayonaise recipe as there are goulash recipes.

I'll go ahead and open the topic. Everyone else, come on in, the water's great.

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Old 04-06-2006, 08:38 PM   #15
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Nutmeg is good the trick is just a tiny pinch or so not too much.
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Old 04-06-2006, 09:53 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpmcgrew
Nutmeg is good the trick is just a tiny pinch or so not too much.
I agree. It adds to the dish.
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Old 04-06-2006, 10:41 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by auntdot
Hi Frenchonionsoup, welcome aboard.

As always, Andy M has hit the nail on the head.

I have to agree that French onion soup, which I love to make although I start from bones and meat and it takes a while, is not a cream soup.

Maybe you are thinking of vichysoisse, which is a cream soup with oniony (have no idea if that is a word, fortunately the word police rarely visit this site) leeks and potatoes, and it is thick (but not from a roux or bechemel).

If I had to choose between them, would have a hard time.

Again, glad you are here and let's hear more from you.
Haha Auntdot, I think I myself was rather confused with the gazillion types of soups I have drunk.

Actually, the idea is that generally I like my soups thick not necessarily creamy. I had thought that thick soups like Cream of Chicken, lobster bisque or french onion soup were all thickened the same way.

The last soup I made was Minestrone. The first time I made it, it was rather watery and far too fluid for my liking. Subsequently, I added some tomato puree into the soup and it became much thicker, more like the ones found in restaurant.

Thanks for your help too.
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Old 04-06-2006, 10:55 PM   #18
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So let me summarise and clarify. To thicken soups (cream based), we need to make either a roux or belachamel sauce.

The roux is essentially fat (butter or lard) and flour. It becomes belachamel when you add milk to it.

Some people suggested using heavy cream in place of the milk. What is the difference in taste and texture? I'm don't wanna end up with a tub of cream in the fridge sitting for weeks cos I only make soups like once a week or so. Milk is definitely more convenient for me.

So will a roux itself thicken a soup or would belachemel be preferable?
Some recipes suggest that we sprinkle flour onto the vegetable or whatever we are sauteeing and then add milk as the soup is near completion. This is a kind of simplified belachemel isn't it? Cos it seemed to have left out the part about making the roux by melting butter and flour.
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Old 04-06-2006, 11:02 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Goodweed of the North
It is essential to learn how to make a smooth, lump-free roux. Fortunately it is easy to do. Simply use equal amounts of fat and flour, and then slowly add liquid over medium heat while constantly stirring. Nothing could be easier.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North

The liquid above, are you referring to milk or some cream? If it is, then the above refers to the production of a belachemel right?

Wasn't trying to catch you out, just that if I get something wrong and screw my soup up, I won't know how to rectify the mistake due to my inexperience.
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Old 04-06-2006, 11:09 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frenchonionsoup
So let me summarise and clarify. To thicken soups (cream based), we need to make either a roux or blelachamel sauce.

The roux is essentially fat (butter or lard) and flour. It becomes belachamel when you add milk to it.

Some people suggested using heavy cream in place of the milk. What is the difference in taste and texture? I'm don't wanna end up with a tub of cream in the fridge sitting for weeks cos I only make soups like once a week or so. Milk is definitely more convenient for me.

So will a roux itself thicken a soup or would belachemel be preferable?
Some recipes suggest that we sprinkle flour onto the vegetable or whatever we are sauteeing and then add milk as the soup is near completion. This is a kind of simplified belachemel isn't it? Cos it seemed to have left out the part about making the roux by melting butter and flour.
The heavy cream will add some richness. Use milk and see how you like it. You can switch if you like.

Either a roux or a bechamel will thicken. If you sprinkle flour onto the sautéed veggies, the flour and the fat you used to sauté combine to make a roux. That will thicken the soup. If you then add milk, it becomes the same as a white sauce (fat+flour+milk).

As mentioned in an earlier post, any soup that contains a starch such as rice, potato or beans, can be thickened by pureeing some of the starch to thicken the liquid.

A lot of what is preferable in any soup is determined by the type of soup. You understand the basics, do some experimenting.
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