Mushroom Soup with Sherry and Thyme
Homemade mushroom soup makes a nice starter for a meal or a good accompaniment for a sandwich. This recipe uses fresh thyme and sherry to complement the rich, earthy flavor of the mushrooms and a small amount of heavy cream to add a touch of richness. We love the extra flavor you get from using dried mushrooms, but we've included the info on how to replace them with fresh in the recipe notes.
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms (see notes)
- 2 cups warm water
- 2 to 2-1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 3/4 cup golden sherry
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 lb fresh mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves (plus more for garnish)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup heavy cream (or more to taste)
- Place the dried mushrooms in a bowl and add the warm water. Allow to stand for a minimum of 30 minutes to rehydrate the mushrooms, then transfer them to a cutting board using a slotted spoon, chop roughly and set aside.
- Add enough broth to the soaking liquid to equal 4 cups, then stir in the sherry and set aside.
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the carrot and celery. Sauté for about 4 minutes until softened, then add the onion.
- Continue cooking until the onion is soft and translucent, 3 minutes longer, then add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more.
- Stir in the rehydrated mushrooms and cook for an additional minute. Add the sliced fresh mushrooms (keep a few for garnish), reserved broth mixture, and fresh thyme.
- Simmer slowly for 45 minutes, tasting and seasoning with salt and pepper once or twice during the cooking.
- Using a hand blender (or conventional blender) purée the soup to a smooth consistency.
- Stir in the cream, taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
- Ladle into bowls and garnish with a mushroom slice and sprig of thyme.
We used dried porcini mushrooms in our soup, but you can use any type you like. If you don't want to use dried mushrooms, include another 8 ounces of fresh mushrooms and replace the water with extra broth.