Around the World in 10 Soups

Staff Writer
Our worldwide love of soup spans at least 25,000 years
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While our methods have come a long way throughout the thousands of years since then, our love of soup hasn’t diminished. 

Have you ever sopped up your soup with a piece of bread? Oddly enough, the bread, the broth, and verb "to sop" were once closely linked, linguistically. The word soup comes from the Germanic suppa, which is also the root of the words supper and sop. The word originally meant “to consume liquid,” but, as the term migrated across Europe, it was adopted into Latin vernacular and came to specifically describe a piece of bread soaked in broth and then eaten.

Soup didn’t become the common term used to actually describe the broth itself until the word reached France, where soupe came to mean both the bread and the broth. Then, as England developed a taste for soups in the seventeenth century, the word soup replaced more common terms like pottage or broth.

No matter what we call it, anthropologists believe that soup is one of mankind’s oldest cooked foods. For at least 25,000 years, humans have been boiling bones, meat, and vegetables in water. In fact, people may have been boiling broth long before the invention of pottery; to make soup, the resourceful hunter would have only had to dig a pit, line it with animal skins, and add liquid, protein, and hot rocks. 

While our methods have come a long way throughout the thousands of years since then, our love of soup hasn’t diminished. Nearly every culture has distinctive, comforting soup to restore body and soul in winter or cool them in the summer heat.

Since spring is still a few months off, we decided to gather some of the most delicious soups from around the world.  

Australia: Chicken and Corn


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Ginger makes the Aussie national soup a little bit spicy, while creamed corn offers a touch of sweetness. The result is a bit like a bisque but much easier to prepare.

Colombia: Ajiaco


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This rich, cream-based soup incorporates corn and at least three types of potatoes, so it’s not for the carb-wary, but all those carbs pay off in the ultimate South American comfort food. 

 

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