Cream of Mushroom Soup {A Meatless Monday Recipe

Cream of Mushroom Soup {A Meatless Monday Recipe

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks and features a wonderful homemade stock, wine, and heavy cream. Not to mention, this recipe was perfect for using those beautiful dried mushrooms I got from Mr. Mello last summer.

Mr. Mello has a farm called Oak Shade Farm, down in Culpeper County, Virginia. He brings some of the prettiest shiitake mushrooms, other vegetables, and goods to the Farmers’ Market in Warrenton, Virginia. You may remember me speak of him when I made the Pasta With Shiitake Mushrooms and Basil for Meatless Monday a while back. Before the growing season was over last summer, he gave me some of his dried mushrooms to experiment with. In the back of my mind, I knew I wanted to try a soup with those mushrooms. I put them in the pantry closet for safekeeping until I was ready to use them.

Years ago, cream of mushroom soup was a thick and condensed blob that came out of a can and had to be thinned with water. I usually would add it to casseroles, but at times I would eat heat it up and eat it as a soup with crackers. I have seen several recipes for homemade cream of mushroom soup, even a healthier version from The Brooklyn Homemaker when he used roasted cauliflower to thicken the soup instead of heavy cream. Since I had never had “REAL” cream of mushroom soup before, I decided I would dive into a cream of mushroom soup head first, but I wanted the heavy fat creams and all. I decided I would adapt one by Ina Garten. She is always my go-to recipe guru because I have yet to try one I didn’t like. Instead of using wild mushrooms as she did, I decided I would use those dried mushrooms Mr. Mello had given this past summer.

Here’s how I made the soup:

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

The Mushrooms: Skip this step completely if using fresh Shiitakes: Skip this step completely if using fresh Shiitakes.

Place the dehydrated shiitake mushrooms in a bowl and cover with 2 cups of warm water for about thirty minutes to rehydrate them. Once they are soft a pliable, DO NOT discard the mushroom liquid. Strain the mushroom water into a glass or bowl using a funnel lined with a coffee filter. After straining the mushroom liquid off of the mushrooms, cut off the stems and trim off any bad parts then coarsely chop them and set aside. Slice the re-hydrated mushroom caps into bite-size pieces and set aside.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Clean the Portobello mushrooms by wiping them with a dry paper towel. Separate the stems, trim off any bad parts, and coarsely chop the stems and add them to the shiitake stems. Slice the Portobello mushroom caps ¼-inch thick. If there are large ones, cut them into bite-sized pieces and add them to the re-hydrated shiitake mushrooms.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Make the Stock: In a large pot over medium-high heat, melt tablespoon of the butter and heat olive oil. When the butter is foamy, add the mushroom stems, onion, carrot, thyme, and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook 10 to 15 minutes, until the vegetables are soft. Pour 4 cups water and the 2 cups of the filtered mushroom liquid from the shiitake mushrooms into the pot; bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

After 30 minutes, strain the stock through a sieve. Reserve the liquid and discard the vegetables. You should have about 4 ½ cups of stock (I actually had 4 ½ cups exactly. If you have less than 4 ½ cups, just add some water to make up the difference.)

The Soup: Meanwhile, in separate large pot, heat the remaining butter and add the cleaned leeks. Cook over low heat, until the leeks start to brown, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Next, add the mushroom caps; cook until brown and tender.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Now add the flour and cook for 1 about a minute to get rid of the raw taste flour can have.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Then stir in the wine, scraping the bottom of the pot for another minute.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Next, pour in the mushroom stock, the minced thyme leaves, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for another 15 minutes.

After simmering, pour in the half-and-half, cream, and parsley. At this point give the soup a taste and season with salt and pepper as necessary. Heat through but do not boil. Serve hot.

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks. | TheMountainKitchen.com

I am excited to share with you my learning experiences. I learned so much from making this soup, not only did I learn how to re-hydrate mushrooms, but I learned about leeks. I had never even bought leeks much less cleaned and cooked them. This Cream of Mushroom Soup was not a simple throw together a recipe and it became pretty involved working with the dehydrated mushrooms, but all the work paid off. This soup was full of flavor and I learned a lot from it. I hope you enjoyed it too!

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Treat yourself to this cream of mushroom soup. Guaranteed to melt away a cold winter’s day, this smooth and creamy soup is blended with mushrooms and leeks.
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American, French
Keyword Cream of Mushroom, mushrooms, soup
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 6
Calories 533kcal

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces dehydrated shiitake mushrooms
  • 16 ounces Portobello mushrooms fresh
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter stick + 1 tablespoon (divided)
  • 1 cup yellow onion chopped
  • 1 carrot chopped
  • 2 sprig fresh thyme + 1 teaspoon minced thyme leaves divided
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups leeks chopped with white and light green parts (3 medium leeks)
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley minced

Instructions

The Mushrooms

  • Skip this step completely if using fresh Shiitakes. Place the dehydrated shiitake mushrooms in a bowl and cover with warm water for about thirty minutes to re-hydrate them. Once they are soft a pliable, DO NOT discard the mushroom liquid. Strain the mushroom water into a glass or bowl using a funnel lined with a coffee filter. After straining the mushroom liquid off of the mushrooms, cut off the stems and trim off any bad parts then coarsely chop them and set aside. Slice the re-hydrated mushroom caps into bite-size pieces and set aside.
  • Clean the Portobello mushrooms by wiping them with a dry paper towel. Separate the stems, trim off any bad parts, and coarsely chop the stems and add them to the shiitake stems. Slice the Portobello mushroom caps ¼-inch thick. If there are any large ones, cut them into bite-sized pieces and add them to the re-hydrated shiitake mushrooms.

Make the Stock

  • In a large pot over medium-high heat, melt a tablespoon of the butter and heat olive oil. When the butter is foamy, add the mushroom stems, onion, carrot, thyme, and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook 10 to 15 minutes until the vegetables are soft. Pour 4 cups water and the 2 cups of the filtered mushroom liquid from the shiitake mushrooms into the pot; bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.
  • After 30 minutes, strain the stock through a sieve. Reserve the liquid and discard the vegetables. You should have about 4 ½ cups of stock, and water if less.

The Soup

  • Meanwhile, in separate large pot, heat the remaining butter and add the cleaned leeks. Cook over low heat, until the leeks start to brown, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Next, add the mushroom caps; cook until brown and tender.
  • Now add the flour and cook for 1 about a minute to get rid of the raw taste flour can have.
  • Then stir in the wine, scraping the bottom of the pot for another minute.
  • Next, pour in the mushroom stock, the minced thyme leaves, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for another 15 minutes.
  • After simmering, pour in the half-and-half, cream, and parsley. At this point give the soup a taste and season with salt and pepper as necessary. Heat through but do not boil. 
    Serve hot.

Notes

If using fresh shiitake mushrooms: Add 6 cups of water instead of 4.
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten

Nutrition

Calories: 533kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Cholesterol: 114mg | Sodium: 62mg | Potassium: 900mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 3880IU | Vitamin C: 14.8mg | Calcium: 116mg | Iron: 2.1mg
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The Mountain Kitchen

Hi, my name is Debbie, Author and Photographer at The Mountain Kitchen, a blog that shares delicious homemade recipes using clean food ingredients, and stories about mountain life.
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8 thoughts on “Cream of Mushroom Soup {A Meatless Monday Recipe”

  • I agree, good call on using the dried mushrooms for this recipe.
    Creamy soups are the perfect thing for them to soak in all that yumminess (we both know that’s a word).
    And kudos to you love for making the mushroom stock for this, this soup is the real deal 🙂

  • Your soup looks soooo delicious! Ina’s recipe was the one I was looking at originally before I decided to “healthy” it up. I love everything Ina does but it sounded really heavy, albeit really delicious!
    I love cooking with leeks but they are a real pain in the butt to clean so I don’t use them nearly as much as I would otherwise.

    • Hi Tux,
      First of all, thanks for the inspiration! I hope you don’t mind me plugging your blog. Now that I have made the heavy version, I want to try you healthy version some time. Ina’s version was definitely a guilty pleasure soup!
      Yes, it is a bit of a challenge cleaning the leeks, but it is so worth doing. I need more recipes!!
      Debbie

    • This sounds delicious, as does your Mr Mello. Would love to check out the farmers market when I’m visiting? Also liked the idea of the cauliflower as a substitute….perfect for those days when the diet needs a reboot!

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