15th February 2019
With the weather still a tad cold at this time of year, there’s nothing more comforting and homely than a hot bowl of soup to warm you up. This now got us thinking about the origins of soup and where it comes from. We caught up with Rachel Pickering our Senior Cultural Resources Advisor to find out more.
“Soup is a universal foodstuff, eaten all over the world and it is a dish that is probably as old as cooking itself. It has been a staple dish for thousands of years. It is easy to prepare, economical and can be hugely varied depending on the ingredients available.
“In the medieval period soups – or sops – were often served as the second meal of the day after a full day’s work as a lighter meal in the early evening. This may be where we get the phrase ‘supper’ from. It was tradition to eat the soup with bread, with lumps of bread often soaked in the broth or used to mop up the liquid at the end.
“Similar to soup, and another very common dish, was pottage. Pottage was often made with grains or cereal as a base and sometimes made with what may seem like unusual flavour combinations to us today. Eggs, cereal, grains and breadcrumbs would be used to thicken broths and bulk out the soup.
“It is believed that soup may have been the foundation for the first public restaurants in 18th century Paris. Soups such as broth, bouillon and consommé were known as ‘restoratifs’. This word eventually came to be used as the name for public dining spaces where these dishes were served, the word from which we derive ‘restaurant’.”
Now that you know the origins of soup, why not make our chef at the castle’s red pepper and tomato soup?
1kg of plum tomatoes
300g tin of chopped tomatoes
1 white onion
150g piquello peppers
4 red peppers
3 cloves of garlic
30g chopped basil
400ml olive oil
1 tbsp. sea salt
8 sprigs of thyme
2 litres vegetable stock
Extra virgin olive oil
We’d love to see your photos of you making and enjoy this delicious recipe! Share them with us using #EdinburghCastle.