As an artist, I am always thinking about the things that are catching my eye - those things that are a source of inspiration to me at the moment. It may be colors, patterns, or light at a certain time of day.
Right now, its Autumn that is inspiring me. Specifically - a sort-of storybook idealistic European Autumn with dense, fragrant woodlands full of changing leaves, cool brisk breezes, and warm sunlight peeking through the trees. Everything is beautiful shades of brown, taupe, burnt orange, mustard yellow and sage. In this idealized Autumn scene I have a basket in my hand and I am collecting blackberries, chestnuts and wild mushrooms.
Naturally, all those delicious wild mushrooms would just love to be a warm and soothing soup. A soup enjoyed in an over-sized arm chair in front of the hearth, a soft afghan over my lap and a good novel in my hand.
This recipe really fit that bill. It is low-fat yet still very rich and filling and right now with all the mushrooms in season its easy on the pocket book as well. This makes a great main dish but would also be a beautiful first course at a dinner party (followed of course by things like roasted pumpkin, sweet corn and warm apple and pear desserts).
Wild Mushroom & Leek Soup
350 g Chanterelle Mushrooms, chopped (about a cup and half)
350 g Baby Bella/Cremini Mushrooms, sliced (about 5 or 6 cups after sliced. These are just called Brown mushrooms in Germany)
2 large Leeks, chopped - white parts only (about 3 and half cups after chopped)
5 cloves of garlic, pressed
1 teaspoon dried chopped Rosemary
1 teaspoon dried chopped Thyme
3 Tbs flour
1/2 cup Red wine
2 cups Beef or vegetable broth
3 cups water
1/2 cup 2 percent milk (you can of course use cream instead - just use much less and add it just as you are taking the soup off the heat. Or you can just leave this out and make this vegan as well)
Salt and Pepper
Heat olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the chopped leeks and season with a bit of salt. Let saute for around 10 minutes or so. Add the baby bella mushrooms and let saute for around 3 minutes. Add Chantarelles, herbs, garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine and let saute for another 3 to 5 minutes.
Sprinkle in the flour and stir until combined and coating all the vegetables. Add the red wine and let simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the broth and water. Raise heat until soup just comes to a boil, then reduce and let simmer uncovered for around 30 minutes. Stir in the milk and let simmer for another 10 minutes or so. Serve warm.
I topped this with caramelized shallots and Chantarelle mushrooms, which gave it a little something extra. Would also be good with toasted hazelnuts and a thick hearty whole grain bread to soak up the broth.
I heart film. - A little over a year ago I bought a Canon Ae-1 and last week I found the first roll of film I shot on it and finally had it processed (Its been a crazy year ...