Creamy Mushroom Soup

By MrsWheelbarrow
October 2, 2009
88 Comments


Author Notes: I often find amazing mushrooms, both wild and cultivated, at our local farmers market. I've made this soup with cremini, shitake, button, hen of the woods, oyster, chanterelle, and many other local wild types. This soup is velvety and satisfying.MrsWheelbarrow

Food52 Review: With this recipe, MrsWheelbarrow takes a classic home cook recipe and elevates it to elegant dinner party fare. First, she has you make a reinforced stock by simmering the mushroom stems in chicken broth. Then, in a move that evokes the fastidiousness of culinary school, she instructs you to "beautifully and precisely chop" 1 1/2 pounds of mushroom caps into a 1/2-inch dice. Halfway through, you will likely be cursing both her and us, but trust us: It's worth it. And that's really the bulk of the work. The chopped mushrooms slowly cook down with shallots, thyme and rosemary, and then you deglaze them with a generous swig of Cognac, combine the mushrooms with the reinforced stock and finish with a swirl of cream and a heap of freshly chopped chives. The resulting soup is a lovely balance of delicately creamy and intensely mushroomy, with layered undertones of herbs and Cognac. - A&MThe Editors

Serves: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 pound mixed mushrooms, cleaned, stems separated from caps
  • 1 pound cremini mushrooms, cleaned, stems separated from caps
  • 1/2 cup minced shallot
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup Cognac
  • 4 cups rich homemade chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped chives

Directions

  1. Roughly chop the mushroom stems and simmer them, covered, in the chicken broth for about an hour.
  2. In the meantime, heat the oil in a large skillet, and sauté the shallots until transparent. Add the herbs and salt and pepper liberally.
  3. Beautifully and precisely chop the mushroom caps into a 1/2-inch dice. Add them to the shallots as they are chopped. Keep the heat very low and cook gently until the mushroom liquid is released and reabsorbed. Shake the pan so they don't stick. Remove the thyme and rosemary.
  4. Turn up the heat and add the Cognac. Flame it if you're feeling really chef-y. Cook the mushroom cap/shallot mixture down (after Cognac) until well-reduced and starting to turn a little golden on the edges.
  5. Strain the mushroom stems from the chicken broth.
  6. Add the beautiful mushroom cap and shallot mixture to the strained broth and heat gently.
  7. Swirl in the cream and chives and serve. Or serve in small sipping cups topped with chives and lightly whipped cream, if you want to get fancy.

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Reviews (88) Questions (4)

88 Comments

Theresa P. December 9, 2017
A very tasty soup, that is easy to vegan-ize or make vegetarian. Some adjustments I made: I didn't find that the broth to cooked mushroom ratio was very good, so I ended up adding about 2 additional cups of vegetable broth to the mushroom stem liquid, once strained. In terms of browning the mushrooms, I wasn't too vigilant, and I am glad because any browning tended to go away when the mushrooms were added to the broth. In lieu of cream, I used a soy based product called Belsoy, that comes in a tetra pack. I know it from Germany, but found that my local health food store in Toronto, Canada started to sell it. I used all of the 250ml. It has the consistency of conventional sour cream, is a great substitute for these kinds of dishes, and is exceptionally good for making cream sauces.
 
Amanda November 6, 2017
This was excellent. I used store bought chicken broth (jazzed up w/ fish sauce and white wine) and blended the soup (prior to adding the cream) with an immersion blender just a bit. Next time I may add a bit more cream, more mushrooms and thicken it up just a bit. Thank you for sharing!
 
Jasser A. October 28, 2017
This was absolutely incredible. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. The next time I make it I'll slice the mushrooms a bit thinner though. I added a drizzle of truffle oil at the end and it went well. On the side cheddar and sage buttermilk biscuits.
 
draya3 February 18, 2017
I'm 1/3 of the way through "beautifully and precisely" chopping mushrooms. Husband is watching The Clash on YouTube. Current song: Straight to Hell. 'Nuf said.
 
Author Comment
MrsWheelbarrow February 20, 2017
Hope it was worth it! I love this soup and your comment has reminded me to make it again. This week!
 
marija June 21, 2016
Made it tonight and loved it, it is truly delicious. A few notes - I didn't bother with " beautiful and precise" chopping, I did not discard hers or mushroom stems, it all went in and instead of cream I added almond milk. This only serves 4 at best, definitely not 6. As for the flavor it's truly delicious! I will be making it again very soon.
 
Carla O. February 27, 2016
Made this tonight, it was delicious.
 
Cosmic J. February 27, 2016
I think would be a lovely soup but I would lighten it by using half/half or perhaps whole milk. I would also like to consider some vegan options! If anyone has any please share!
 
Andi D. June 1, 2016
Replace whipping cream with soy (or any plant-based) cream and chicken stock with veg stock. Pretty much done. The workhorse of this dish is vegan anyways.
 
catdaddysammy February 12, 2016
I didn't really like this recipe :( too rich for me.
 
Melissa P. February 8, 2016
I tried this recipe tonight, with a few changes/substitutions. I used dried mushrooms because i couldn't find any fresh cremini mushrooms, and I chopped up the herbs and left them in. The soup didn't look like the picture, but It was a delightful treat on a snowy day.
 
Erica C. September 19, 2015
one additional comment: I would only add the cream to what you plan on serving immediately. Otherwise, it breaks as the soup cools.
 
Erica C. September 19, 2015
Made this today. It was really delicious, but pretty expensive considering it definitely would NOT serve 6. Not bowls of soup. MAYBE tiny cups of soup. I wish I had doubled it. I bought the most gorgeous assortment of mushrooms from the Farmer's Market this morning for this recipe, and it's killing me to "waste" the stems. Does anyone have any ideas about what I can do with them?
 
Hali February 18, 2015
Used bourbon and stuck with cremini. Absolutely delicious.
 
Karen February 17, 2015
This is sooooo good. The broth with the stems is super rich and adds so much flavor. I used Ste Germaine instead of cognac and it was lovely as well.
 
Natalie December 24, 2014
Doubled the cognac and cream. Amazing!
 
ReeceAmy October 23, 2014
Holy cats MrsWheelbarrow! This soup is amazing! Served first half as traditional soup. Second half a couple of days later, I strained off the liquid and reduced it with a splash of cream, warmed the mushrooms, combined both with some pasta - heavenly. PS Loved the tip about feeling chef-y!
 
caseymsy September 14, 2014
Sounds lovely ,am going to try tonight.
 
Pam July 11, 2014
I made this and it was so delicious and pretty. Thank you!
 
Christina @. February 25, 2014
OH YUM! How could anyone not swoon with this soup in front of them?
 
Author Comment
MrsWheelbarrow February 25, 2014
So glad you liked it!
 
kimizimi February 7, 2014
Delicious and easy to make! I was able to serve four generous portions.
 
Author Comment
MrsWheelbarrow February 25, 2014
Glad you liked it!
 
Renee B. January 23, 2014
Delicious! It won't serve six. Not even small portions. The broth boils down from 4 cups to, let's say 3 or 3 1/2. Add to that the mushrooms (stems removed, not to be eaten) that have been cooked down, 1/4 cup of whipping cream, and 1/4 cup of cognac. It serves just two or three portions—incredibly delicious portions. Do double or triple the recipe because you will want more, much more! I made this to surprise my mushroom loving husband when he returns tomorrow from a trip. I'd planned to have some today but there wouldn't be enough for tomorrow with dinner.
 
Author Comment
MrsWheelbarrow February 25, 2014
Too true. My husband and I will eat up this entire recipe!