With the fall rains upon us it is time for a wild mushroom bonanza for those people brave enough to go out into the very wet forests of the Pacific Northwest. Since I am a very avid hunter of shrooms I thought I would share one of my favorite recipes for these plentiful fungi. There are hundreds of variations of soups that you can make out wild mushrooms. This is a very basic recipe that you can easily add ingredients to that will fit anyone’s taste buds. My word of warning though if you do not know with 100% accuracy what you are picking “DO NOT EAT THEM” a lot of knowledge makes for a tasty night, but a little bit makes for a trip to the hospital.
- 3 1/2 cups canned low-salt chicken broth or vegetable broth
- 1 1/2-ounce dried and crumbled Hedgehog mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups chopped onions
- 12-20 ounces assorted sliced wild mushrooms (such as Chanterelle, Yellowfoot, or Hedgehog)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried
- 4 teaspoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups low-fat (1%) milk
Bring the broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat, and add dried mushrooms to the saucepan; let them soak until the mushrooms soften, in about 20 minutes. Drain, reserving broth but discarding any sediment in broth. Coarsely chop up the mushrooms if needed (rarely need to chop with hedgehogs).
Heat the olive oil in a heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add chopped onions and sauté until tender, about seven minutes should do it. Add wild mushrooms and sauté until brown and tender, about 8 minutes. Add minced garlic, thyme, and rehydrated mushrooms and sauté for two minutes. Sprinkle flour over; stir one minute. Gradually whisk in reserved mushroom soaking broth and low-fat milk. Bring to boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to medium and boil gently until soup thickens slightly, about 12 minutes. Transfer 1 1/2 cups soup to blender and puree until smooth. Return to pot. Bring soup to simmer. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into bowls and serve.
This soup is excellent in a sourdough breadbowl. I have used multiple different types of mushrooms in this and all of them have turned out great. The next variety I would like to make would be to include some chicken of the woods mushrooms in it. The firmness of that variety of mushroom should give it a good texture, and make it more like a creamy chicken mushroom soup.