Summer time is an excellent time for thyme soup. Soup in summer is super! As we sweat during the day we lose minerals (electrolytes) and while there are drinks that claim to restore electrolytes, they are sugar-laced and of questionable overall health benefit. Besides, I prefer sipping something savory over sipping something sweet.
Finding Thyme in the Southwest
Thyme is one herb that is easy to grow in the Southwest. This lovely, fragrant, tasty, and healthful herb in native to the rocky slopes of the mountains of the eastern Mediterranean region, in the area that is now mostly Greece. Since they are pre-adapted to low water conditions, most species of thyme can be grown here. I grow my thyme plants where they get roof run-off, thus I rarely need to water them; and yet they offer a lush look to my entryway with their glossy green leaves. Do make sure thyme is in well-drained soil. Add some sand if you must. I killed several plants until I had finally added enough sand to their bed.
If you are not “into” outdoor gardening, you can purchase pots of the genial herb and grow it on your kitchen window sill. Avoid over-watering.
You can also purchase bundles or bunches of fresh thyme at any number of local markets. offer Look for fresh thyme in the produce section. One bundle makes a lovely batch of Thyme Soup.
Sprinkle thyme fresh or dried in soups, salads, on meat dishes or use in herb breads. Use an ample number of sprigs in herbal vinegars and oils for an intense and refreshing flavor. For a quick meal at the end of a long day make Sopa de Farigola, or Thyme Soup, a dish popular in the Catalonia region of northeastern Spain and brought into our region with Father Kino’s escort of soldiers.
water – 2 cups
thyme – 1 bundle or roughly 2 tablespoons fresh chopped thyme, 1 tablespoon dried thyme
olive oil or butter – 1 tablespoon
traditional – day old bread, substitute older corn tortillas torn up or use tortilla chips
optional – fresh chives, garlic chives, or scallions, diced
optional – salt to taste
sauce pan – quart or so
Prepare the Soup
Over medium heat, place oil or butter in pan and warm slightly.
Add thyme and optional chives or scallions and stir.
Saute very lightly to release herbal oils into the cooking oils.
Add water and heat to roughly 180F – less than boiling but too hot for fingers. I would say steaming but in a Southwest summer it’s hard to see steam. Remove from heat.
Scramble the two eggs in a bowl or measuring cup.
Stir the soup so it is swirling and drizzle in the scrambled eggs. They eggs will rapidly cook.
Prepare two bowls with bread, sliced tortillas, or corn chips in the bottoms.
Pour the soup into the bowls and serve.
A Savory Meal
This Thyme Soup recipe is easily doubled (or more) and can be elegantly served to company. To help make it look even fancier, garnish the top with a sprinkle of freshly diced chives.
Thyme Soup is a lovely end of the day light meal. The soup offers the three basic food components necessary to maintain our bodies. There is protein from the eggs, carbohydrates from the tortillas or bread, and a touch of the fats from butter or oil which are necessary to replenish and rebuild cells.
Jacqueline offers numerous presentations across the Southwest. The next is October 6 at the Southwest Festival of the Written Word (Oct. 4-6) in Silver City New Mexico. Also look for her at National Parks across the Southwest, local libraries, Tucson Festival of Books and other venues. After each event she will be signing copies of her books, including Father Kino’s Herbs: Growing and Using Them Today. Note – This link is to Amazon and if you buy the book there I will get a few pennies.
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