Head into the woodlands to forage some autumnal funghi, or pick up a pack of dried mushrooms at the local supermarket and try out Sue Lawrence’s fail-safe Mushroom Soup. This recipe is taken from The Scottish Soup Bible which is packed full of great warming recipes perfect as the nights get colder.
Mushroom Soup from The Scottish Soup Bible by Sue Lawrence
Traditionally mushroom soup would have been made only in autumn in Scotland, when wild mushrooms such as chanterelles, ceps and puffballs were foraged in woodlands. These days, however, it can be made at any time of year because of the availability of dried wild mushrooms. But if you happen to be picking wild mushrooms then it is even more sublime. I like it best made with fresh wild chanterelles (available in the woodlands of Scotland from the end of July until the first frosts of winter) or with dried ceps (porcini). The mushroom flavour is enhanced by the addition of the fresh cultivated mushrooms.
250–300g fresh wild mushrooms or 50g dried wild mushrooms
250ml dry sherry or white wine
1 onion, peeled and chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped, optional
450g button or chestnut mushrooms, sliced
750ml chicken or vegetable stock, hot
150ml double cream
Chopped flat parsley
If using fresh mushrooms, clean them thoroughly by cutting off any root tips and cleaning with a soft brush. Slice if very large. If using dried mushrooms, rinse and soak in the sherry or wine for about 30 minutes.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan and gently fry the onion (and garlic if using) for about 10 minutes, then add the mushrooms (if dried, drained of their liquor, which should be saved; if using fresh, add the wild and also the cultivated ones).
Stir well to coat in the fat and cook for a couple of minutes, then add the soaking liquor from the dried mushrooms, or, if using fresh, add the sherry or wine. Stir, then cook over a high heat until the liquid has evaporated. Now add the stock, salt and pepper, and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until tender.
Liquidise in batches and return to the pan. Reheat gently, add the cream and stir well, then check the seasoning and serve in warm bowls, topped with a scattering of chopped parsley.
The Scottish Soup Bible£4.99