"A first-rate soup is more creative than a second-rate painting."
Today is a raw and rainy day. This doesn't bother me though, because it gives me an excuse to neglect the outdoor work I should be doing in the garden. Instead, I look for ways to cozy up in the house. One of them is this soup. You know the "Song That Never Ends?" I wanted this to be the bowl of soup that never ended. It was so delicious and comforting. Warming me through to my toes. Add a fire and a good book and that's a cozy afternoon. Should I be ironing? Probably. But it will keep for a couple hours.
This recipe is basically Ina Garten's Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup. I just made an easier version, since I am not averse to canned chicken stock.
Cream of Wild Mushroom and Leek Soup
4 tablespoons butter
5 ounces shitake mushrooms
5 ounces portobello mushrooms
5 ounces white button, cremini (or porcini) mushrooms
2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green part only (2 leeks)
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup flour
1 cup dry white wine
32 ounces chicken broth
1 cup half and half
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Clean the mushrooms by wiping them with a dry paper towel. Don't wash them! Trim off any bad parts and half of the stem. Slice mushrooms 1/4 inch thick. Melt butter in a large pot and add leeks. Cook on low for 10 - 15 minutes until they begin to brown. Add the mushrooms and cook for 10 -15 minutes until they are browned and tender.
Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Add the white wine and seasonings and stir for another minute, scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the pot. Add chicken stock and simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in creams and parsley and bring just to a simmer. Serve immediately. If you would like to use bread bowls, wrap them in foil and heat them in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Just before soup is ready, slice off the top and then scoop out the doughy center, leaving 1/2 inch of bread all around the bowl. Fill with soup and serve immediately.