I came across this website and I think it's the most AMAZING website ever!!!! It's called They Draw and Cook and what it is is the most beautifully illustrated recipes. It makes you want to just get out there and cook. I now want a blank wall in my kitchen only so that I can hang all these up.
On cool days, I like drinking soup. However, making good soup, from scratch, does take quite a while as you need a good base of bones, vegetables, etc. Over Chinese New Year, we had "Kiam Chye Boi' which is a soup dish that should contain bones of roasted meats and salted vegetables (and lots of other ingredients!). The idea is to boil a huge portion and then re-heating and having it over a few days, only because the flavour intensifies the longer you keep it.

The secret, to me, is probably the bones of roasted meats. This is the reason why people tend to 'doggy-bag' the bones of roast pigs from restaurants, etc.

When you're cooking for one, or two, it doens't make sense to spend so much time labouring over cooking soup. Taking a page out of the 'bones of roasted meats', I do keep bones of the roasts I cook. Normally it's chicken or turkey. The other day I bought a whole chicken from the market and they also give you the feet and neck so thsoe have been 'saved' as well.

With the bones, I normally apportion them into one serving size. E.g 2 chicken legs / 1/2 a roast chicken carcass, etc - and I palce them in bags and freeze them.

The other main ingredient for a good soup is also vegetables. Carrots, celery, onions, etc - all these help built the flavour of soup. I was watching a Jamie Oliver show and he suggested that from your daily cooking, the parts of carrots, celery, onions, etc that we won't eat i.e. the top and bottom part of the carrot, that it gets saved for making stock. Afterall, you throw these bits out at the end anyway. So that's what I do, everyday when I'm cooking any hard veges that could add flavour to my soup base, I'll toss it in a bag in the freezer.

With 'bones' and 'veges' on hand at all times in the freezer, making stock/soup is a breeze. Just dump the bones and veges in a pot of boiling water, boil for about 30 minutes and you'll have very good tasting soup base. For me, doing it this way also saves freezer space from what I used to do which is making soup stock and then freezing the liquid.

This is also much healthier than using commercially-prepared soup cubes or granules as it's more natural.

So, what's your next stock going to be?