We decided to take a break from canned soups this winter after sampling six new flavors of organic soups from the Blount Fine Foods company of Fall River, Mass.
The fresh-tasting, fragrant soups have homemade quality, texture and flavor and contain an impressively large list of ingredients starting with chicken and vegetable stocks, butter, cream, milk, eggs, cane sugar, garlic, the superfood spice turmeric and an actual mirepoix of diced carrot, celery and onion. Exclamations of “Wow!” and “How did they do this?” were common during the tasting.
Let’s start with our three favorites. Coconut Lentil is a well-balanced blend of flavors from al dente lentils, coconut milk, curry, spinach and lemon juice.
Broccoli Cheddar had just the right texture – nothing gummy or too thick about it – with surprisingly big pieces of broccoli in a rich, silken soup with flavors of white cheddar and American cheeses.
The stock in the Chicken Noodle held al dente pasta, shreds of chicken breast, and sizable pieces of onion and celery. “I wish I could make chicken soup like this at home,” said one taster.
As for the other three flavors in the tasting: Thick and smoothly textured Tomato Bisque delivered plenty of acidic tomato flavor, but tomato and red wine vinegar overwhelmed the Ancient Grain Minestrone (textured with faro, quinoa, chick peas, barley, mushrooms and seaweed).
For our tastes, Savory Harvest Bisque was way too sweet, but likely won’t be for those who love thick butternut squash soup spiked with sweet potato, apple, ginger and rosemary.
Two other flavors in the line are Chicken Tortilla and Vegetable Chili, which we did not sample.
The soups are packaged in clear plastic containers, in the refrigerated section exclusively at the five Nugget Markets in the Sacramento area; $6 for 16 ounces. The plastic seal on top of the container gave us fits in several of the varieties, forcing us to puncture it and get our fingers covered with soup to remove it.