A Dash Of Turmeric Is The Easy Way To Elevate A Tomato-Based Soup

Tomato-based soups are a classic meal for so many reasons. Not only are they flavorful and versatile, with variations ranging from traditional roasted tomato soup to rustic pappa al pomodoro, but they can also be intensely comforting and full of warmth. These nostalgic dishes may become a little too familiar sometimes, however, leading to a desire to give them a bit of a revamp. An easy way to do just that is with one powerful and tasty ingredient: turmeric.

Turmeric is an aromatic ingredient that originates from Southeast Asia. It is similar in appearance to ginger, except with a bright, golden-yellow interior and a much earthier, more savory flavor. Given the slightly sweet and acidic flavor that tomato brings to the base of any given soup, turmeric pairs well by acting as a contrasting and balancing element in the dish. Its taste will round out the assertiveness of these flavors in the tomato, while also enhancing the umami undertones that may otherwise go unnoticed. It is also worth mentioning the benefits that turmeric has been shown to have on well-being, which Cleveland Clinic confirms include reducing inflammation and boosting mood. As such, adding a little bit of this seasoning to your next soup will do more than just help to please your palate.

Tips for pairing turmeric with soup

Given how popular turmeric has become as of late, it is fairly easy to find the ground version at your average grocery store alongside all of your other favorite herbs and spices. If you have your heart set on adding fresh turmeric to your soup, you will need to look a little harder, but you can likely find it at a specialty or health food store. If you do decide to go with the fresh root, be sure to properly perform a water test to ensure your turmeric is pure. This is to verify that your turmeric is safe to use since low-quality turmeric can be contaminated with substances that are unsafe for human consumption.

Both the color and flavor of turmeric can be quite potent, so when adding it to soup, it is best to start with just a few teaspoons, give it a taste, and then make adjustments accordingly. While this beloved aromatic will add dimension to any tomato-based soup, it performs particularly well in spicy and funky formats. We recommend adding it to our easy slow cooker chicken tortilla soup or our spicy harissa eggplant stew.