I mentioned on my post about how to dry mushrooms for storage that I was going to use the stems to make soup. I really try to not let anything go to waste around here. If I don’t use it for a meal it goes to feed the chickens, the worms or into the mulch pile. I was going to put the mushroom stems into the food bowl for the worms but I realized that could make a delicious soup for the hubby – he loves mushrooms. I will be going away at the end of October and it will be good to have meals in the freezer he can just pull out in the morning to thaw and then heat when he gets home from work. A rich mushroom soup would be a delicious treat for him while I was gone. This batch made about two quarts so it will feed him several meals.
Cream of Mushroom Soup
Makes about 2 quarts
cleaned stems from 9 pint boxes of mushrooms
water to cover
1 cup half and half
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 TBS dried sage
1/4 cup + 1 TBS brandy
1 TBS butter
1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper
Place the mushroom stems in a large, heavy bottomed, non-reactive pot over med-high heat. Cover with water and add a good sprinkling of salt. Bring the water to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Let the stems cook for about an hour until they soften a bit.
Using an immersion blender reduce the stems to a smooth puree. If you do not have an immersion blender carefully transfer the stems with some of their liquid, in batches, to a blender and puree until smooth. Return to the pot.
Add the sage, the heavy cream and the half and half. Bring the soup just to a boil but do not boil. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to low.
Add the olive oil to a small saute pan. When hot add the sliced mushrooms. Cook until they start to wilt. Add the tablespoon of brandy and flame it if you are comfortable or just let it cook off.
When the mushrooms are fully wilted and the brandy is gone add them to the soup. Add the rest of the brandy to the soup and let it heat through for several minutes so the alcohol cooks out. Mix the butter and flour until it forms a paste. Whisk it in bit by bit until the soup thickens. Cook the soup for about five more minutes and it will be ready to serve.
I chopped some of the dried mushrooms to sprinkle on top but a bit of fresh parsley would have also done nicely. I’ll serve this to him with some corn muffins – maybe jalapeno corn muffins. He’ll like that. It had a strong mushroom flavor and the sage and brandy were perfect accents.