holding soups for service

Joined Apr 19, 2001
Tips for holding soups with rice, grains, or pasta for service? It seems as tho there are as many different ways to do this as there are places I've worked! Keeping the starches from absorbing too much liquid from the soup is my main concern; the way it worked the best was that the starches were cooked and held separately, and added to the soup 'a la minute'. But at my new gig, I think the wait staff is going to be responsible for plating the soup, and I'm not sure I want them adding the starch. Any other ideas out there?
Joined May 26, 2001
Are you afraid they won't add the right amount of the starch if it's separate? If that's the case, you could keep a sized scoop (ice-cream or dough-type spring-loaded) on the station and train them to use it.

Otherwise, can you put out smaller batches of soup? So that the soup with the starch in it doesn't sit for very long. This means more work for the cooks who have to re-load, but might solve the problem of serving temperature as well.

Hope this helps.


Staff member
Joined Jun 11, 2001
How long does it need to hold? If you're going to go through major volume then I wouldn't worry too much about it. If it has to sit around all day then it's another story. If the latter is the case, then there's no getting around having it scooped, as they say, "a la minute" :) If the kitchen has to scoop it then you might as well make the kitchen serve it as well!

Joined Apr 24, 2001
An especially nice way to present soup may be tableside pitcher service. The solids are arranged on the bottom of a soup plate and the broth is in a pitcher. The server places the plate before the customer and then pours the broth over the solids. You can even squeeze some sauces or other purees on the bottom of the plate for added drama. This works better with meats that are nicely sliced or shredded and vegetables that are trimmed to fit in spoons. My dad did this for us with jook (rice porridge) and thin slices of raw fish or beef when we were little. Besides the meat, there were also shredded green oinions and ginger, a few drops of sesame oil and sometimes cilantro.
Joined Apr 19, 2001
Thanks, all - I'll have to wait to see how things shake out - the restaurant's not even open yet! But I liked the idea of the scoop, and had already decided I was going to put smaller quantities out. Monpetitchoux - Loved your idea and presentation, but don't think this place is going to offer that kind of service!

Thanks, again!

Latest posts

Top Bottom