Sunday, December 6, 2009

Fresh Mushroom Soup

So, mushrooms were the last food I have taught myself to, if not like, at least appreciate for their "mushroomyness." (I've hated mushrooms for as long as I can remember.)

They were the only food that would make me gag (well, that an gristle, but is gristle really a food?). Still
, over the past two years, I've been trying to incorporate them into our meals, and now, I can say, "Mmmm, that's a good mushroom dish." Notot my favorite food, but mushrooms and I get along better now.

I think there's a metaphor for life somewhere in there, but I'll spare you those thoughts.

Really, the ultimate triumph is that I can enjoy this mushroom soup. Not that this is a hard soup to like. It's rich and creamy. Seriously, it could be a sauce over a poached egg and an English muffin for a decadent breakfast or dinner.

Fresh Mushroom Soup
Gourmet Cookbook

2 cups half and half
1 medium onion
1/2 stick unsalted butter
3/4 pound mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced I used 2 8 oz boxes of creminis with the stems removed because they were looking a little yucky
4 t all-purpose flour
1 cup beef stock or store-bought broth I used the stock left over from this dish
1/2 Turkish bay leaf or 1/4 California bay leaf
1/4 t salt
1/8 t freshly ground pepper
2 t fresh lemon juice I had the lemon, but forgot to add it

Bring half-and-half just to a boil in a heavy sacuepan, then remove from heat and cover to keep warm.

Meanwhile, cut a 3/4-inch-thick crosswise slice from center of onion; reserve remainder for another use I'm not sure why or how they thought of this, but I'm glad--it would have been weird , kind of disturbing the texture of the soup, to have diced onions floating there, which is what I was tempted to do until I realized this would save me work!

Heat butter in a 6-quart wide heavy pot over moderately high heat until foam subsides. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add onion slice, then sprinkle mushrooms with flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add stock in a slow stream, stirring constantly, then add half-and-half, bay leaf, salt, and pepper. Reduce heat to low and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.

Discard onion and bay leaf and stir in lemon juice.

Add a loaf of French bread to dip in this soup and a salad for a quick easy dinner!

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