Sunday, November 18, 2012

Champignonsoep

These are busy times. Sint Maarten hasn't even left the building, figuratively speaking, and the next Saint is already eager to step forward and take his place. Set aside the wafels of Sint Maarten, because now it's time for Sint Nicolaas kruidnoten, speculaas and borstplaat!

But all that sweetness sometimes leaves you wanting for something else. Not a full meal, not a sit-down affair, but a quick pick-me-up. A hot, savory something to gulp down, before you get back on your bike and rush out to get some more Sinterklaas gifts, ingredients to make gevulde speculaas or some of those horrible-but-can't-stop-eating-them "kikkers en muizen", sugar-filled chocolatey candy in the shape of frogs and mice, wrapped in aluminum foil overalls. (Yes, you read that right, they are wearing bright-colored overalls. Why? I have no clue, but I'll try and find out!)

How about a savoury, steaming cup of mushroom soup instead?

The fact that mushroom soup is one of Holland's traditional soups is hardly surprising. Since the start of the first mushroom production in 1825, the country has become the third largest mushroom grower in the world. The fields of northern Limburg, Noord-Brabant and Gelderland proved to contain the perfect growing conditions and these provinces produce almost 94% of its national total.

Creamy mushroom soup is therefore, next to tomato soup and split-pea soup, one of the favorite choices for a cold, wintery day!

Champignonsoep
1 lb mushrooms
1 quart of chicken or vegetable broth
½ cup onion, diced
1/3 cup celery, sliced
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter
4 parsley sprigs, stems and leaves separated
A pinch of freshly chopped thyme
2 cloves
1 bay leaf
½ cup heavy cream

Wash and slice the mushrooms, keeping one mushroom whole. Melt the butter in a pan, and slowly sweat the onions and the celery in the fat, until the vegetables are soft. Add the mushrooms and the thyme, stir several times while they slowly release their juices and gain flavor.
When the mushrooms are soft, remove about half a cup for garnish and set this aside. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables in the pan and stir several times, so that they’re coated and slowly add in the stock. Keep stirring to make sure all the flour is dissolved. Bring to a boil, then turn to a slow simmer.  Take the whole mushroom and stick the bay leaf to it with the help of the two cloves. Add it to the soup, as well as the parsley stems. Simmer for twenty minutes.
Take out the whole mushroom, remove the bay leaf and the cloves and chop the mushroom in pieces, and return it to the soup. Purée the soup to a fine consistency. Taste. Stir in the heavy cream and warm the soup, but do no longer boil. Taste again. Adjust seasonings to your liking. If you have it, a drop of sherry will do this soup good.  Add in the remaining mushroom slices, garnish with some chopped parsley leaves and serve hot.
 

 

3 comments:

  1. I made this for dinner tonight and it's really special. It's delicious, and I received lots of compliments.
    Thank you from Italy!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I just made it for lunch tomorrow. It tastes like magic.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This soup is exquisite! I didn't have cream, so just used about 1/3 cup milk to keep it thick. What blew my mind is how savory it is even without salt! I did add just a pinch to mine, but my rather discerning husband preferred it without and said the soup made his night. Dankuwel!

    ReplyDelete

I welcome your comments! Please be so considerate as to include a name, as anonymous postings will be deleted.