Meatless Monday: Bourdain’s Mushroom Soup

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Dinner on Saturday was braised short ribs and, due to a lack of planning, I didn’t have a veggie or starch to go with it. I hastily made a double batch of basamati rice, which left me with leftovers.

A lot of leftovers.

“Soup,” I thought. “We’ll have soup some night this week.” And, by some night, I meant Monday.

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I didn’t want a boring chicken and rice soup…anyone can make that. I thought about a bisque. Maybe, a mushroom bisque, that could go over rice. And then I came across Anthony Bourdain’s mushroom soup on Serious Eats from his Les Halles cookbook. If Bourdain says it’s good, and he does, I’m in.

This was surprisingly easy to put together, though it required a small adjustment for Meatless Monday: vegetable stock was swapped for chicken here.

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WHAT WORKED: Seasoning. The mushrooms and onion work well enough, but this needs a considerable amount of salt to bring it to life. And a pinch of herbes de provence before blending doesn’t hurt. And rice. It goes really well over rice.

WHAT DIDN’T: The timing. It said to cook for an hour. Yeah, I needed it faster. So, rather than reducing to low and simmering, I kept it at medium and let it cook down. Convenience won out over slow cooking, I’m sad to say.

WHAT DID THE WIFE SAY: “It does need salt, and I don’t often say that.”

WILL IT MAKE ANOTHER APPEARANCE: Very likely. There’s about 16 oz. of it leftover in my fridge.

2013-11-11 at 18-17-05Anthony Bourdain’s Mushroom Soup
From Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook via Serious Eats

  • 6 tbsp. butter
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 12 oz. button mushrooms, halved (NOTE: I used a combination of cremini and white buttons)
  • 1 qt. chicken vegetable stock
  • 1 sprig parsley
  • 2 oz. sherry
  • salt and pepper

Over medium heat, melt two tablespoons of the butter in a saucepan. Toss in the onion and cook until soft but not browned.

 Toss in the remaining butter and then add the mushrooms. Cook for 8 minutes.

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Pour in the chicken stock, add the parsley, and bring to a boil. When bubbling, reduce to a simmer and cook for an hour.

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Pour soup into a blender* (you might need to do this in stages), and process until smooth. Return to the saucepan and bring to a simmer. Pour in the sherry, and season with salt and pepper.

*I used an immersion blender right in the pot and it was fine. I would remind you to keep the blender head submerged in order to prevent a mess or burns.

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