Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Instant Corn Potage Soup - H-Mart: Cherry Hill, NJ

Instant Corn Potage Soup - H-Mart: Cherry Hill, NJ
I woke up this morning, looked outside my window, and everything was covered in snow. We only got two inches, and I know many of you get a LOT more snow in your area and my piddly little amount is nothing to complain about, but I just hate winter. I'm a total Scrooge about the holidays and I hate being cold. Snow is fun when you're a little kid. You sometimes get out of school, you have snowball fights, build forts, it's magical and whimsical and fun. Once you have your own car, and your college or job won't close unless it's the end of times, and even then you're lucky if you get a 2-hour delay, snow looses a lot of it's appeal.

Since it's cold and snowy, what better way to warm up than with a bowl of soup?

Corn Potage is a soup that was originally French, but adopted and tweaked by the Japanese to suit their tastes and preferences. It's quite popular, you can buy hot Corn Potage in vending machines, there are instant packets (like these) in the markets, and you can even buy crispy snacks with this flavoring. I've actually never tried Corn Potage in it's true, soup-y, form. A long time ago I bought a snack pack from the Asian Food Market that had several Umaibo sticks. Although a lot of the flavors were not really my taste, like Veggie Salad, there was one flavor that I really enjoyed, and that was the Corn Potage. I liked it so much, I decided to buy some of the actual soup to see if the taste was really the same.

Okay, enough rambling, it's review time!

The packaging is a bright yellow color, which obviously goes with the overall corn-flavoring, and it's layout is really appealing. I love the images used, the soup looks really appetizing, especially with it being so cold, and the colors are warm and inviting. I'm not sure if this is a popular brand for this product, but out of all the options that were on the shelf at H-Mart, this was definitely the prettiest. (Which is why I tossed it into my cart.)

Inside are three foiled instant soup packets. Is it just me, or do these look like giant ramen seasoning packets?

I poured the contents of one packet into a bowl, added the recommended 5oz of boiling water, stirred, and it was time to eat! Doesn't get much easier than that. Just add water and you're good to go.

The finished soup is really thin and watery, not as thick as it appears on the box, and there are a few pieces of (now) re-hydrated freeze-dried corn.The soup is kind of cloudy and doesn't look all that yummy, but maybe it'll taste better than it looks?

I took a sip, and it was sweet, salty, slightly creamy, and a bit onion-y. Not bad! I like the flavoring, and it was pretty much the same as the dusty coating on the Umaibo sticks I loved so much, but it's just not filling. There is no way you could eat a bowl of this soup and feel full afterwards. I think this is a food item that's more about warming you up than being a meal on it's own. It's just too thin, and there's barely any corn in it.

If I had the opportunity to order this from a hot vending machine on a cold day, I'd definitely do it! The corn and onion flavoring is really nice, and I really love the taste, but I think this meant to be a savory option to buying a hot cup of tea or coffee. This soup just doesn't have enough substance to be a meal.  (Also it might give you onion breath, there's no one here to confirm that for me, but my mouth is tasting pretty onion-y right now.) If you like Panera's Summer Corn Chowder, or the Corn Potage Umaibo sticks, this soup is for you. I'd buy it again for sure, although I am kind of tempted to make my own and see if I can make it a bit more hearty.
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