Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Hungarian Mushroom Soup

Because it looked like this outside:

I had only one option.

I believe in diplomacy, and this soup is what middle ground is all about.  This is like a good DTR talk about the potential of a LTR...of soup.  Or whatever.  Meet me half way, okay?

This soup embodies some of the richness that often accompanies mushroom soups in the "cream of" category but stands its ground against being just another dull-ass soup of healthfood yesteryearwater.  In other words, this shit is bomb without making you feel like you just ate one.  And it's totally not boring at the same time (I'm looking at you, chicken noodle... especially when I'm not sick).

Paprika I brought back from Hungary that is probably way too old to use.

I couldn't get my hands on any "wild mushrooms," and didn't feel like foraging 6th Street for anything growing out of all the (usually human) doodoo chilling on the block, so I settled for some baby portabella mushrooms I found on sale.  Though I will confidently say I believe cremini, straight up button mushrooms, or whatever kind you find on sale will work.

With that said, the only adaptation I made was leaving out the "wild" part.  'Cause if I wanted to get wild I wouldn't be eating soup.

Hungarian Wild  Mushroom Soup
slightly adapted from Edible Portland

2 Tbsp butter
1 cup chopped onion (about one medium to large onion)
1/2 cup chopped leek (about 2 stalks)
2 tsp minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
2 lbs cleaned, roughly sliced wild  mushrooms
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp paprika
3 Tbsp fresh dill weed, chopped
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
3 Tbsp flour
2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup milk
Black pepper, freshly ground
1/2 cup sour cream
Parsley, roughly chopped for garnish

In a large stockpot, melt butter over medium heat.

Add onion, leek and garlic.

Sauté for 5 minutes or until onions are translucent but not browned.

Add mushrooms, salt, paprika and 2 tablespoons of the dill. Stir well. Bring to a slow simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes.

Remove the lid, stir and simmer uncovered for an additional 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in lemon juice.

Sprinkle flour evenly over mixture. Simmer while stirring continuously for another 5 minutes.

Add stock,cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring often.

Add milk and black pepper to taste and turn the heat to low.

Whisk in sour cream, a little at a time. Be careful not to boil the soup from this point on.

Add salt to taste.

Not entirely recommended

I foolishly stuck my immersion blended in the pot without taking some of the soup out to preserve a chunky mushroom texture.  I would recommend setting half aside, blending it all up until thick and creamy, then dumping the unblended half back in.  This is all, of course, very optional and questionably superficial.  For some, texture is a pretty big deal, as illustrated by the band Catherine Wheel in the opening track of their 1992 debut full-length Ferment (and consequently the beginning of the end of shoegaze?  Blending -- only for the brave). 

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