Wild Mushroom Soup
Locally, our newly opened grocery store presents the produce section in a whole new way. It feels like a kid in a candy store to a wanna-be chef. There are baskets of colorful organic fruits and straw bins of beautiful mixed nuts. The promotion of “gourmet” and overall focus on “fresh” makes you want to try to cook something rich and warmly robust. I remember a wooden box bountiful with wild mushrooms. It evoked a feeling of rustic and natural meals; it appealed to me in these cold months.
These various fungi consist of portobello, shiitake, crimini, oyster, and chanterelle. The mushroom that we see above ground is the actual fruit of the fungi. All of these have a woodsy, nutty flavor and can be dried for an indefinite shelf life, however, it is important that you cook wild mushrooms because raw wild mushrooms can make you sick.
Although, there are many health benefits to mushrooms and they have been used in ancient medicines since the beginning of time, mushrooms have been linked to boosting your immune system and there are many studies relating them to weight loss. This is perfect for the winter months when I’m stuck inside and eating my way through the holidays.
When I was younger I was not fond of mushrooms. Growing up in the foothills of NC I spent most my days outside in our garden or playing in the creek behind our house and during cooler months it was warming to come inside for a heaping bowl of soup. My mother would make a wild mushroom soup that was rich and creamy and I never knew it contained mushrooms. She would chop the mushrooms so small I couldn’t identify them and she would pair it with bread fit for dipping. It was so good.
This hearty soup can fill you up while satisfying you inner ‘granola’. Try my earthy take on this delectable wild mushroom soup. The addition of toasted pita points provides a “dipable” sponge that can be torn off for each bite. Enjoy!