I started making vegetable stew the way I always do, dice an onion, start to cry, rub my eyes and make it worse, curse the existence of onions…etc. I reached in the fridge to get out the carrots and zucchini, and spotted the leftover mushrooms from the Veggie Lasagna I had just made.
Mushrooms are one of my absolute favorite foods (my apologies to my dear friend Shannon, who mortally hates mushrooms in all capacities). I love how spongy and chewy they are, and how beautifully they blend into just about anything. However, I’ve never tried putting them in soup before. I decided to give it a try, and here are the results.
|Fresh Rosemary, Sage, and Thyme|
I started by throwing my usual ingredients into the crockpot, which recently earned a permanent place on the countertop. I chopped 2 zucchini, 2 large potatoes, and 1 large carrot into chunky pieces and threw them into the crockpot along with almost a full can of vegetable broth (I reserved about 1/4 cup for the mushrooms) and some leftover frozen peas. Usually I peel the potatoes and carrots, but I decided not to this time to capture their rustic qualities. Next I chopped up the onion, garlic, and mushrooms for sautéing.
Sauteeing the Mushrooms:
First I sautéed the onion in a little olive oil, then added the garlic, mushrooms, butter, 1/2 salt, and pepper. After the mushrooms were fully cooked, I added in the reserved vegetable broth and continued cooking until it was mostly evaporated (the smell at this point made me want to abandon my idea and eat a bowl of sautéed mushrooms for dinner...somehow I resisted!). I then added the heavy cream, herbs, and about 2 tbs of flour, and let simmer for another minute or so. Tip: mix the flour with water or some of the broth before adding it in, so it won’t be lumpy.
Putting it All Together:
I added the mushroom mixture into the crockpot along with some more vegetable broth and a little more flour, and let it cook for about 4 hours on high. It turned out so much better than I expected! In hindsight I would have also added some sautéed celery, but I didn’t have any this time. It wasn’t like any creamy soup I’ve had before because I mixed it with broth, but nevertheless I thought it was pretty good and very flavorful.
2 large russet potatoes, skin on
1 large carrot, skin on
1/3 cup frozen peas
2 cans of vegetable broth (15.5 oz)
1 yellow onion
1 garlic clove
2 tsp olive oil
1 sprig of fresh thyme, finely chopped
1 sprig of fresh rosemary, finely chopped (remove from stem by pulling against the grain)
2 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
8oz package of white mushrooms, sliced
1 regular sized package of shitake mushrooms, sliced
1 tbs butter
Half pint container of heavy cream (the itty bitty one)
2 tsp coarse salt (1/2 for the mushrooms, and the other half in the soup)
1-2 tsp black pepper (to taste)
4-6 Tbs all purpose flour
What gets stuck in my head every time I cook mushrooms: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EIyixC9NsLI
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