‘Tis the season for gift-giving! This year, instead of offering a bottle of wine or plate of cookies as a hostess gift (not that there’s anything wrong with them!), what about giving a quart of homemade soup instead? In our opinion, there’s no better token of appreciation.
Recipe: Start by choosing a recipe. There aren’t many boundaries here but vegetable soup is always a good option, especially if you’re unsure of the recipient’s preference for meat. If meat-based soups are in play, though, chicken soup is a great choice – this recipe starts by making a flavorful base, then gives you ideas for different add-ins. This beef soup recipe follows the same idea. Both recipes give you a terrific-tasting base on which to build a soup with your own flavor “signature.”
Keep in mind that rice, noodles or grains will soak up broth over time, so increase the amount of Swanson® broth by a cup or two to make up for any liquid absorption.
Containers: After making the soup, package it properly. Glass canning jars are our first choice for packaging and can be dressed up with ribbon or raffia. Plastic storage containers are a less formal option that work equally well, and have the added benefit of going into the freezer in case the giftee wants to save the soup for another time.
Dress up the container with a printed label – find templates on the internet – and include the date along with the name of the soup.
Extras: Sometimes we tie a small pouch of garnishes or add-ins around the neck of the jar – try toasted almonds with wild rice soup, crunchy croutons with tomato soup or a small chunk of aged Parmesan cheese to grate over tuscan bean soup. Another nice gesture? A copy of the recipe so your lucky recipient can give the gift of soup to someone else!