Last week, Coles had specials on mushrooms. The timing was perfect as I had plan to cook my own creamy mushroom soup. However, I didn’t have the chance to cook it until tonight as it was pretty hot for the past whole week. There’s no air-conditioner in our house and we only have a tower fan to keep ourselves cool. Drinking hot soup on a hot day in our hot house is definitely a big NO NO. Tonight is good as the temperature is slowly going down.
Actually, I tried making my own mushroom soup once, last year, but didn’t like the consistency of the soup because I didn’t blend them at the end. I did not have a stick blender or a food processor at that time. We bought a stick blender at the beginning of this year so time to re-visit my creamy mushroom soup. This time, I added dried porcini mushrooms to give the soup a stronger earthy flavor and it really worked wonders. The aroma was absolutely fantastic. Dried porcini mushrooms are not cheap though, $5.89 for 20g but you only need a small amount for the soup. Having soup alone could not satisfy our large capacity tummies so I did a quick pan-fried chicken to go with the soup.
Creamy Mushroom Soup (Serves 4) (Slightly adapted from Jamie Oliver)
- 50 g butter
- 600 g sliced mushrooms (I used a mixture of portobello and button mushrooms)
- A small handful of dried porcini
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
- A small handful of parsley (chopped)
- 1 leek (white part only, chopped)
- 3 cloves of garlic (peeled and chopped)
- 1 liter of chicken stock
- 300 ml cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Soak dried porcini in a cup of boiling water and set it aside.
- Melt 50g butter in a big pot and add in the chopped leek. Fry for a minute and then add in the chopped garlic. Fry for another minute.
- Add the mushrooms and thyme to the pot. Stir and cook them until the mushrooms release all of their moisture.
- Chop up half of the soaked porcini and leave the rest whole. Strain the soaking liquid to remove impurities. Then, add all of them into the pot and let it cook for about 20 min until most of the moisture evaporates. This helps to concentrate the mushroom flavor.
- Add in seasoning and stock. Let it simmer for 20 min. Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool down a little. Blend the soup using a stick blender.
- Return the pot to the heat and add in the cream and chopped parsley. Heat it gently for about 5 min. Serve it with crusty bread. (If you have truffle oil, 2-3 drops of it is going to further enhance the soup flavor. Sadly, I do not have one in my pantry now. I need to get this baby soon)
Pan-Fried Chicken (Serves 4)
- 4 chicken thigh fillets
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tsp of smoked paprika
- 1 lemon
- 3 tbsp of olive oil
- Flatten the chicken fillets with a meat mallet.
- Sprinkle salt, pepper and smoked paprika on the fillet and rub the seasonings all over the chicken fillet.
- Heat up 1 tbsp of olive oil in a non-stick pan and add in the chicken fillets. Fry them for about 2 min on each side. Do not overcook them as they’ll get dry and tough.
- Meanwhile, squeeze the lemon and mix the lemon juice with 2 tbsp of olive oil in a shallow bowl.
- When the fillets are done, transfer the chicken fillets into the bowl containing the lemon juice and olive oil mixture. Move them around in the mixture and let them soak up the lemon juice and olive oil mixture. (Jamie Oliver Style) This produces chicken fillets that are super moist and juicy.
- Serve it warm.