I'm utterly obsessed with soup at the moment. I'm embracing it as I'll go off it again for a year soon. It's so easy to make and store and it's a great on the go food if you have a flask. And did you know that soup keeps you feeling super full because the blend of liquid with food tricks your stomach (specifically your pyloric sphincter valve) into releasing a hormone to tell your brain you're full? Well, now you do! Recently I've been craving mushroom soup in particular. Mushroom soup conjures up memories of meals out with an old love at Bournemouth Wetherspoon's (don't judge me, I was young and it was the only bearable pub in town) - he'd have steak and I'd have the mushroom soup. I thought I was having the healthy option but it was probably laden with cream. But man, I thought that soup was good.
I picked up some dried mushrooms on offer in my local farm shop and was inspired by this super recipe by Jamie Oliver. I had some hazelnuts knocking about and wanted to bring them into play too.
I'm assuming this version is much healthier than the one that was on offer at Bournemouth's finest 'Spoons and I actually have no words on how nice it is. A lemony dressing cuts through the earthiness and the texture is creamy and honest. You have the option of stirring in some cream, crème frâiche or mascarpone in the final stage but I'm on an elimination diet so didn't.
I served with slices of bread drizzled with hazelnut (or you can use walnut) and toasted under the grill.
Recipe // Mushroom soup with a hazelnut topping
- Small handful dried wild mushrooms
- 500g good quality mushrooms, sliced
- Large knob of butter
- 2 leeks, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 small handful fresh thyme
- 800ml chicken or vegetable stock
- Salt and pepper
- To serve:
- 3 tbs hazelnut or walnut oil - if you can't find any good quality ones some cold pressed Rapeseed oil will suffice
- Small handful whole hazelnuts
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- Salt & pepper
- First soak the dried mushrooms in enough boiling water to cover for at least 20 mins
- In a large saucepan or soup pan heat your butter on a medium to high heat and throw in all your sliced mushrooms until they start to soften
- Add the leeks, garlic, thyme and seasoning and continue to stir round - once everything starts becoming a lot wetter, throw in your soaked mushrooms including the soaking water
- Keep heating and stirring for around 5 minutes or until some of the liquid has been cooked out
- Now turn down the heat to medium and take half of what's in your pan and blitz in the blender before adding back to the pan
- Next add all your stock and simmer on a moderate heat for 10 mins then transfer all the contents of the pan to the blender before blitzing
- Transfer back to the saucepan, check the seasoning and allow to cook on a low to medium heat for another 10 mins
- In the meantime, in a small bowl or jug mix together your lemon juice, oil and some salt and pepper and set aside
- In a small, dry pan toast your hazelnuts on the hob and then throw into a pestle and mortar and give a quick bash
- Fill two (or however many people you're feeding) bowls with soup, drizzle on some of the oil and lemon and then top with the hazelnuts
- Instagram a picture and let me know what you think
Formally Emma Gutteridge