By Mike Small

THE SOUP TEST is a key part of our new food Manifesto. 

The manifesto is an ongoing evolving plan to influence and shape food policy. But like most things it’s better not to wait until someone else acts, there’s nothing to stop us getting started with a lot of this right now. So if you work in a school and want to try out the Soup Test, here are the guidelines:

  • The aim is to teach each other how to cook with local, seasonal, affordable ingredients, so make sure to use local and seasonal ingredients (!) Finding out what these are and where to find them is part of the process.
  • Soup is a great way to learn as it’s cheap, doesn’t require any fancy equipment and has endless variations.
  • Need a suggestion for some great winter soups? Try Borscht, Leek and Potato, Spicy Parsnip, Cream of Brussel Sprout Soup, Cullen Skink or why not try Secret Ingredient Soup?
  • Feel free to add croutons, flatbreads, homemade pittas or yoghurt to add to your soups.
  • Try making a VERY big pot and feeding the whole class or inviting the headmaster and the dinner ladies!
  • Try working out how much it costs to feed everybody with a big pot of soup. Compare it to ordering takeaway for everyone.
  • Please let us know how you get on, email us:


Here’s some recipe ideas:

Garlic Soup with Mint

Spiced Root Veg and Kale

Celeriac Bouillion

Cream of Brussel Sprout Soup

Spicy Parsnip Soup