The earthy flavour of mushrooms is at its best puréed into this soup. This soup’s rich hearty flavour will easily satisfy your mushroom craving, and there’s enough for seconds or leftovers. It also shows off how well meaty mushrooms and red wine go together.
Yield: Makes 4 - 6 bowls
1 stick Butter
2 pounds button mushrooms, rinced and sliced
3 onions, peeled and chopped
a sprinkle or two sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 bottle hearty red wine
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream (35%)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup water
Place a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the butter, mushrooms and onions. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté until lightly browned. The mushrooms will initially release a lot of moisture, preventing them from browning. Eventually that moisture will evaporate, allowing the pot’s heat to rise to browning temperature.
Pour in the red wine and bring it to a simmer. Continue cookingthe moisture in the wine will evaporate, concentrating its flavouruntil the wine has reduced by about two-thirds.
Add the chicken broth, heavy cream and fresh thyme. Stir well and bring the soup to a simmer.
Meanwhile, dissolve the cornstarch in the water. Add this mixture slowly to the simmering soup, stirring until it returns to the simmer and thickens slightly. If you prefer your soup a bit thicker, feel free to add more cornstarch. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if desired. Serve immediately.
You may use any mushroom or combination of mushrooms to make this soup. Shiitakes in particular are an excellent choice because they add a rich meaty flavour. You may also finish the soup with any of your favourite herbs. Rosemary and tarragon are excellent choices. If you prefer a smoother texture, feel free to purée this soup.