If you ask the waiter for a soupcon of hot sauce on your omelet, he will give you a dash of Tabasco, provided he knows what soupcon means.

It's hard for English speakers not to think of soup when they see this word, especially since it can mean a trace of something (such as a flavor), but the ancestor of soupçon is the same one that gives us suspicion and suspect, the Latin suspectionem: the common theme is that of an idea formed from scant evidence.

Definitions of soupcon
  1. noun
    a slight but appreciable amount
    synonyms: hint, jot, mite, pinch, speck, tinge, touch
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    a pinch of smokeless tobacco inhaled at a single time
    type of:
    small indefinite amount, small indefinite quantity
    an indefinite quantity that is below average size or magnitude
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