This is one of my favorite soups and didn’t realize how long it had been since I’d made a pot until I was standing at the fridge door trying to decide what to do with all these mushrooms I’d bought.  I had all the ingredients at hand so I put this together in about 20 minutes.

The Cream Sherry is one of those things most of us don’t have on hand.  It is an insipidly sweet fortified Sherry that one might associate with their sweet old Granny “having a wee nip in the evenings before bed”.  Now, I’m not telling you to run out and buy a bottle of the stuff because you’re not likely to use it for anything else.  But if you do decide to get some, I have to say it DOES lend an entirely rich taste to the finished soup.  If you purchase a bottle, get the smallest one you can find, once opened keep it in the fridge (for a very long time as it is fortified so it tends to not “go off” to quickly), and be sure to make the soup again soon.  If you decide against purchasing a bottle you can easily substitute with regular Sherry or a semi-sweet Red Wine.

As for keeping this DAIRY FREE, you sure can!  Leave out the butter and add more olive oil (only about 4 tablespoons is needed).  You don’t need the milk at the end at all, it is there to simply add a lightness & creaminess to the finished product, however I have made MANY “cream of” soups without any dairy at all.

This soup freezes beautifully, but DON’T add the milk if freezing, perhaps you could either double the batch and freeze some before adding any dairy.  When you thaw & reheat you can add the dairy then.

I hope you give it a try and let me know what you think. Bon Appetit!

mushrooms cooking

 

Mushroom Soup

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CREAM OF MUSHROOM SOUP 
Approximately 6 servings

3 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 Tbsp. olive oil
¾ cup finely chopped shallots
2 pounds white & mixed mushrooms, peeled or cleaned & thinly sliced
1 tsp. dried thyme leaves
1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes (more if you like heat)
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
Good pinch of Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup Cream Sherry
3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
3 ½ cups low-salt chicken or vegetable broth
½ cup milk (room temperature), this can be optional as soup is great without it 

– In a large saucepan melt butter with the olive oil over medium heat
– Add the shallots and cook until tender, about 2 to 3 minutes
-Add the sliced mushrooms, thyme leaves, hot pepper flakes, salt, pepper and nutmeg, cook until all of the liquid rendered from the mushrooms evaporates
– Add the sherry and cook until evaporated, remove a ½ cup of the cooked mushrooms and reserve for topping soup later
– Add the flour and stir until well incorporated. The mushroom mixture should resemble very lumpy oatmeal, add broth and simmer on medium for about 15 minutes
– Puree soup until smooth – either with immersion blender or in standing blender (in small batches)
– Return soup to saucepan, bring to a simmer and whisk in the milk
– Check seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper as needed
– Serve with a few reserved mushrooms in the center of each bowl
*Also, quite nice served with a dollop of sour cream or crème fraiche