Roasted Five Mushroom Soup Recipe
From morels to matsutakes, Maine is abundant in wild, edible mushrooms growing throughout the fields and forests from early spring through early winter. Thankfully, you don’t have to be a forager to enjoy the savory goodness of locally grown mushrooms—just make this rich, robust soup created by James Beard award-winning food journalist Kathy Gunst. Roasting the mushrooms “brings out an almost smoky, woodsy, earthy flavor dimension,” she says. “This soup is ready when your kitchen smells like you’ve taken a walk deep in the Maine woods.”
Tip: The more mushroom varieties you use, the more dimension you add, but feel free to make this with just one or two supermarket varieties if that’s all you have on hand. (Extra points if you pick up fresh mushrooms from one of the many farmers markets in Maine.)
Roasted Five Mushroom Soup
Serves 6 to 8
3 Tbsp olive oil 1 pound Portobello mushrooms, ends trimmed, and mushrooms, quartered 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, halved 1 pound cremini mushrooms, ends trimmed and mushrooms, halved 1/2 pound maitake (also called hen of the woods), quartered 1/2 cup dried porcini or dried mushroom of choice 1 medium onion, chopped 2 medium shallots, chopped 1 Tbsp fresh thyme, chopped 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock 3 Tbsp dry red wine or dry sherry Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
*Optional Garnish Ideas: 1/4 cup heavy cream, 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives or parsley, 1 cup croutons or a few drops of lemon-flavored olive oil.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a large roasting pan, toss the portobellos, shiitakes, cremini and maitake mushrooms with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, plus onion, shallot, 1/2 tablespoon of the thyme, and salt and pepper. Place on the middle shelf and roast for 15 minutes. Toss the mixture and roast another 15 minutes. The mushrooms should be soft and onions beginning to turn golden brown. (The mushrooms will shrink and lose their water; do not be concerned if the roasting pan looks like it contains half the amount of mushrooms you started with.)
Meanwhile, soak the dried mushrooms in 1 cup hot water for 10 minutes. Drain the mushrooms (Be sure to reserve the mushroom water!) and chop.
In a large soup pot, heat the stock with remaining thyme and simmer on low heat.
Remove the roasting pan from the oven and deglaze the hot pan with the wine or sherry. Pour all the contents of the roasting pan into the pot with the simmering stock along with the reconstituted dried mushrooms and its soaking liquid. Simmer on low, covered, for 30 to 45 minutes. The broth should have a distinct mushroom flavor; season to taste. The mushrooms, particularly the dried ones, should be tender.
Puree the soup in a blender, food processor, or immersion blender. Return to the pot if using a blender or food processor and place over low heat. Adjust the seasoning and add cream if desired. Serve hot sprinkled with toppings of your choice.
About Kathy Gunst
Kathy Gunst is a James Beard award-winning food journalist. She is the author of 16 cookbooks. Her most recent book is Rage Baking: The Transformative Power of Flour, Fury, and Women’s Voices (Simon & Schuster). She is the Resident Chef for NPR’s daily news show, Here and Now, heard on over 500 public radio stations nationwide. She teaches food writing all over the world.