Thursday, March 15, 2012

Wild Rice & Mushroom Soup (aka possibly the best soup we've ever made)



Yesterday I posted a partial menu for the week. Tonight, we made the Wild Rice and Mushroom Soup from www.kitchn.com with a few adjustments. This soup take a little longer to cook than many homemade soups, but it is easy to make and is well worth the effort. And it's healthy too; if you use whole milk, it calculates at roughly 370 calories per main-course serving. If you use heavy cream, it's about 445 calories per main-course serving. This is definitely the most delicious thing that's come out of our kitchen in recent memory. Enjoy!

Wild Rice and Mushroom Soup
Closely adapted from kitchn.com, serves 4 main courses or 6 side courses

While the original recipe states the cheese rinds are optional, they really are a must. They add a lovely depth and the soup wouldn't be quite the same without them. We served this with some beautiful whole wheat rustic bread found at our farmers' market today.

1 cup wild rice
1 large onion, diced
4 celery stalks, diced
1/2 lb baby bella mushrooms, diced
1/2 lb portabella mushrooms, stems removed and diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon oregano (dried or fresh)
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup white wine
2 bay leaves
1-2 cheese rinds
2-3 cups vegetable stock
2 teaspoons rosemary (dried or fresh)
1 cup whole milk or cream
2 teaspoons salt, divided
pepper

Bring 4 cups of water and 1 teaspoon of water to a boil. Add the wild rice and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 45 minutes until the rice is tender. Set aside rice, undrained.

While the rice cooks, prepare the rest of the soup. Warm a teaspoon of oil in a dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onions and celery with a half teaspoon of salt, and cook until the onions are very soft, and starting to brown, 6-8 minutes. Turn the heat down to medium and stir in the mushrooms and another half teaspoon of salt. Cook until the mushrooms have released all their liquid and turned dark brown, at least 20 minutes.

Add the garlic and oregano, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Sprinkle the flour over the veggies and stir until the vegetables become sticky and there is no more visible dry flour. Increase the heat again to medium-high and pour in the white wine. Stir and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Continue simmering until the wine has reduced and thickened a bit.

Add the bay leaf, cheese rinds, rosemary, wild rice, and cooking water from the rice. Add two cups of broth to start. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 20-30 minutes to meld the flavors. Add the milk or cream. Simmer for another 10-15 minutes, until the soup has thickened to your liking. Add additional broth if needed.

Salt and pepper to taste.

::Addendum::
When we reheated this for lunch today, it was even better.
Ian claims it's the best soup he's ever had.