Cream of mushroom soup, parmesan croutons
I woke up this morning, went through my usual rush of a routine and left for work. I felt the first chill of autumn, which can only mean one thing – soup season. I craved cream of mushroom all day. I came up with this simple but rich soup and the peppered croutons add a cheesy crunchy dimension.
Time: 30 minutes
25g unsalted butter (or you could use oil)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2 tbsp of thyme leaves
400g chestnut mushrooms, halved (or quartered if any are particularly big)
875ml good quality vegetable stock
200g creme fraiche (I used the lighter version)
25 g unsalted butter
Ciabatta role, cut into 1 cm cubes
Melt the knob of butter in a deep heavy bottomed saucepan, add the onion and fry gently for 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and thyme and cook for a further 2-3 minutes, don’t allow to brown. Turn up the heat to medium, add the mushrooms and cook until the shrooms soften and turn a glossy brown colour, about 5-6 minutes.
Add the stock, stir, and simmer for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile pre-heat your oven at 180 degrees centigrade. Melt the second knob of butter in a frying pan and fry your ciabatta cubes until golden. Dry on kitchen roll. Put a sheet of greaseproof or parchment paper on a baking tray and season with a generous amount of pepper. Then grate over some parmesan.
Stir in the creme fraiche, bring to a simmer for a few minutes then blitz with a stick blender until lovely and smooth. Season if necessary.
Bake your parmesan croutons for 4-5 minutes until nicely golden. Ladle your soup into bowls, sprinkle over some freshly snipped chives, a drizzle of truffle oil and your croutons on the side. It’s definitely soup season.