Cream of Mushroom Soup

CREAM OF MUSHROOM SOUP

Yield: 2 generous dinner portions (can be easily increased)

A delightful dinner of Cream of Mushroom Soup served with Garlic Toasts. Here’s our recipe, with an innovative technique noted.

Ingredients (if preparing for two people):

NOTE: T = tablespoon; t = teaspoon

  • 8 oz. whole cremini or baby portabella mushrooms, cleaned & sliced 1/4″ thick
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream or half & half
  • 6 T all-purpose flour
  • 1 large shallot, diced
  • Fresh parsley and fresh celery leaves
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt (NOTE: Our ‘house’ sea salt of choice is the fine grained salt from the Algarve region of Portugal. It’s particularly well-suited to everyday usage.)
  • Seasonings: Dried yellow mustard, powdered sage, dried marjoram, Espelette pepper, and granulated onion (for extra depth)

For Garlic Toasts:

  • Thick slices of artisan bread
  • 8 cloves of garlic
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Dried parsley or fresh parsley, minced
  • Red pepper flakes (either Espelette or Aleppo work beautifully)
  • Flaky sea salt, gently crushed between your fingers (Isle of Cyprus flaky sea salt is nice. NOTE: Available in Merchant Spice Co.’s Artisan Salts of the World Collection.)
Preparation:
 
Here’s a quick technique to thickening stock for use in soups. Whisk 6 tablespoons of flour with about 3 tablespoons of EVOO in a mixing bowl. Once smooth, blend in the chicken stock using a whisk. Stir in the seasonings mentioned in the ingredients, to taste. Set aside until you’re ready to add the stock to the cooking pan.
 
Next, sauté mushrooms in 1 T olive oil with a pinch of sea salt. Add shallots and sauté until tender. Then stir in your pre-thickened chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and cook until thickened to your liking. Stir in the cream. Off the heat.
 
While the soup is simmering, prepare your garlic toasts. For these, we crushed 8 cloves of fresh garlic with EVOO in a mortar & pestle, along with a bit of coarse sea salt. Spread this atop your bread and toast until lightly browned. Then sprinkle a bit of Espelette pepper (Piment d’Espelette) or Aleppo red pepper flakes on top, along with some crushed dried parsley (or a sprinkling of minced fresh parsley).
 
Serve the soup, garnished by fresh parsley or celery leaves, accompanied by garlic toasts. A perfect light dinner …
 

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