Soup Bases

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Soup Bases

Postby Jenise » Fri May 26, 2006 1:34 pm

The last time I ordered from Penzey's, I decided to try their chicken soup base.

Well, what a rip. Take Knorr chicken boullion, water-moisten it to the thickness of a pomade and add a little oil for viscosity--and that's the Penzey's chicken soup base. This is artificial chicken flavoring, not the real thing.

I believe others here have spoken well of soup bases in the past. Is yours any closer to tasting of the real deal, and if so what brand do you use?
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Soup Bases

Postby Robin Garr » Fri May 26, 2006 2:29 pm

I was similarly disappointed with Penzey's a couple of years ago, Jenise, after buying it because of their good reputation for spices, and never ordered it again.

I use Minor's bases extensively, though. Yes, they're salty, and yes, they have a little shot of MSG. That doesn't bother me. To my crude taste buds, they come close enough to "real" stocks that I'm not at all abashed about using them as short-cuts. They're a far cry from bouillon cubes, that's for sure.
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Re: Soup Bases

Postby ChefCarey » Fri May 26, 2006 2:43 pm

Jenise wrote:The last time I ordered from Penzey's, I decided to try their chicken soup base.

Well, what a rip. Take Knorr chicken boullion, water-moisten it to the thickness of a pomade and add a little oil for viscosity--and that's the Penzey's chicken soup base. This is artificial chicken flavoring, not the real thing.

I believe others here have spoken well of soup bases in the past. Is yours any closer to tasting of the real deal, and if so what brand do you use?


If you must cook with bases, these are the best I've run across. You'll notice several different grades and compositions.

http://www.rlschreiber.com/shop/home.asp
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Re: Soup Bases

Postby John Tomasso » Sat May 27, 2006 9:29 am

I've never used the Penzey bases. I have worked with many manufacturers of bases, and they almost always come in varying quality levels. As always, the key is on the ingredient panel.
Look for the first ingredient to be meat. If it's salt, well, need I say more?
I work with Custom Foods, Minors and Knorr, mostly, and I would use the top of the line products from any of them in a pinch - but there's no substitute for making one's own - and it makes economic sense, too. Why waste anything?

Custom private labels for a lot of distributors, and is everywhere, at least out here. They make everything from granulated (salt first product) right up to oven roasted, meat first, no MSG, premium product that shows pretty well. I always have a jar of chicken, beef, and clam in the fridge. (of course, those are free samples!)
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Re: Soup Bases

Postby Jenise » Sat May 27, 2006 3:38 pm

Robin, Miners is the name I was trying to think of. I've never seen those out here, btw.

Chef Carey, thanks for the recco. I've just placed an order.

John T--totally agreed about the greatness of fresh, it's just that I cook so much that I go through what I make myself quickly, and I live so far out of town I kind of need some backups for emergencies. I have no problem using canned broth at such times, but I don't always need a whole can, and I was lured by the potential efficiency and compactness of a small jar of base to bolster highly seasoned soups and sauces. I'm going to try the brand that Chef Carey recommended.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Soup Bases

Postby ChefCarey » Sun May 28, 2006 10:44 am

Jenise wrote:Robin, Miners is the name I was trying to think of. I've never seen those out here, btw.

Chef Carey, thanks for the recco. I've just placed an order.

John T--totally agreed about the greatness of fresh, it's just that I cook so much that I go through what I make myself quickly, and I live so far out of town I kind of need some backups for emergencies. I have no problem using canned broth at such times, but I don't always need a whole can, and I was lured by the potential efficiency and compactness of a small jar of base to bolster highly seasoned soups and sauces. I'm going to try the brand that Chef Carey recommended.


Jenise, be very cautious as to quantity when you first use them - they are very intense in flavor. I use them so infrequently myself I actually had a *quart* of the beef consomme in the reefer for over a year!
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Re: Soup Bases

Postby Jenise » Sun May 28, 2006 12:17 pm

Intense is good! Thanks, I ordered the premium chicken and veal, just to play with. And they weren't expensive--all they have to do is save my butt three or four times over the course of a year to be well worth it.
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