Recipe Review: Roasted Mushroom Soup with Apple Cider Stock Part II

As I indicated in Recipe Review: Roasted Mushroom Soup with Apple Cider Stock Part I, this is a soup I’ve been wanting to make for years and haven’t taken the time to tackle.  The class I taught at The Kitchen Shop and Cooking School on Friday evening was entitled Apple Harvest and included apples in each recipe.  What better time to work with this recipe?

In Part I of my post, I explained how I made the cider stock….now for the soup.  In comparison with the making of the stock, the soup is a breeze!

First the mushrooms….for some quick peeks at my recent experience at the mushroom festival in Kennett Square, PA, click here and here…..the recipe called for yellow morel mushroom, oyster mushrooms, and button mushrooms.  Since I wasn’t able to locate morels in my area, I substituted Portobello each time I made the soup.

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I cleaned the mushrooms with a mushroom brush and a damp paper towel and then, although the recipe instructed me to saute the mushrooms whole, never one to follow directions I sliced the mushrooms and sautéed them in butter, stirring occasionally.  “Why?” you ask.  I thought the mushrooms would give up their liquids more quickly and would brown better if they were sliced rather than whole…..my thinking may be flawed (or not), but the outcome was some beautifully browned mushrooms!

After the mushrooms were browned and no liquid remained in the pan, I added some Madeira wine, fresh oregano, and salt/pepper.

In the last year I’ve learned a little something about Madeira wine.  I’m no expert, but I the following information fascinating and thought you might too.  Madeira (REAL Madeira) is made in Portugal – in the Madeira Islands – and is a wine fortified with brandy.  (Not too bad so far, right?)  There is a wide spectrum – from dry to sweet – of this very robust wine.  The wine undergoes a unique wine making process and a unique aging process.  During wine making, the wine is heated for an extended period of time and is exposed to a specific level of oxidation.  During the aging process, the wine is stored in sauna-like conditions.  These processes are meant to mimic the intense heat and constant movement of the ships on which Madeira was originally transported – these two factors had a transforming effect on the wine.

In my quest to learn about Madeira and try different brands, I have found that you can buy “knock-off” Madeiras from California – they are quite inexpensive, but you get what you pay for.  When I spent $10 more per bottle on Leacock’s Rainwater Madeira, I got a change in flavor that was immeasurable! I’m not sure for cooking I would spend much more per bottle, but for drinking I certainly might!

Anyway, back to the soup…while the mushrooms and Madeira mingled in the skillet, I heated the cider stock in a separate stock pot.  The mushrooms continued to cook until the Madeira evaporated.  Then I added all but 1/2 cup of the mushrooms into the heated stock and simmered it for 15 minutes.

Finally, I used my immersion blender to puree the soup until it was smooth (if you like a little texture in your soup, feel free to leave it chunky).  I added a whisper of heavy cream, simmered the soup for an additional minute and tasted it for seasoning adjustments.

Then, the moment of truth….taste testing.  The roasted mushroom soup with apple cider stock was magnificent.  It was smooth,, creamy (but not overly so), warm, and flavorful.  It had a hint of sweetness from the stock which balanced nicely with the mushrooms.  I will say the second time I made it the apple cider I purchased was sweeter than the first time and I liked the soup better with a less-sweet cider.

This past Friday evening I made this soup for the students in my Apple Harvest class and they LOVED it too!

I’d give this soup 5 M’s out of 5!

Even though it is very time-intensive, it is worth the work.  I would definitely recommend you giving this soup a try….perhaps for a holiday or other special occasion. You will not be sorry!

Roasted Mushroom Soup with Apple Cider Stock

Ingredients

  • 2 cups yello morel mushrooms (can substitute portobello mushrooms)
  • 2 cups oyster mushrooms
  • 2 cups button mushrooms
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves (divided)
  • 1/4 cup Madeira wine
  • 7 cups apple cider stock (see recipe below)
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream (optional)

Note

Adapted from "In Praise of Apples: A Harvest of History, Horticulture & Recipes" by Mark Rosenstein, 1996.

This recipe will make more cider stock than you need for the Roasted Mushroom Soup with Apple Cider Stock.  YOu can freeze the rest for other uses.

Directions

1. Wipe any dirt from the mushrooms and remove and discard any dried, hard parts of the stems.
2. Heat the butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the whole mushrooms and sauté, tossing once or twice during the first few minutes. The mushrooms will begin to render their liquid.
3. After 5 minutes, reduce the heat to medium-low.
4. Pour 7 cups of cider stock into a stockpot (separate from the mushrooms) and bring to a simmer.
5. Continue to cook the mushrooms, browning them and allowing them to render all their liquid. You may need to add some additional butter to keep them from sticking to the pan or burning. Stir once every 3 minutes while they cook.
6. After the mushroom liquid has evaporated, add the salt, pepper, 2 Tbsp oregano, and the Madeira wine. Allow the wine to evaporate completely.
7. Add all but 6 Tbsp of the browned mushrooms to the simmering stock. Turn the heat up and bring the stock to a slow boil. Cook for 15 minutes.
8. Check seasonings and adjust if necessary.
9. Puree the finished soup with an immersion blender.
10. Add the cream and cook for about 1 additional minute to allow the cream to incorporate into the soup.
11. Divide among bowls and garnish with the remaining oregano and the whole mushrooms.
12. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Apple Cider Stock

Ingredients

  • 4 cooking apples (such as Fuji, Golden Delicious, Jonagold, Cortland, or Nittany)
  • 6 medium carrots
  • 6 leeks (roots and 1/2 of greens leaves removed)
  • 4 cups Portobello mushroom stems
  • 3 tablespoons light cooking oil (such as safflower or peanut oil)
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 1 gallon fresh apple cider
  • 2 tablespoons black peppercorns
  • 12 sprigs fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 bay leaf

Note

Adapted from "In Praise of Apples: A Harvest of History, Horticulture & Recipes" by Mark Rosenstein, 1996.

This recipe will make more cider stock than you need for the Roasted Mushroom Soup with Apple Cider Stock.  YOu can freeze the rest for other uses.

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
2. Core and chop the unpeeled apples.
3. Cut the peeled carrots, leeks and mushroom stems into 2" pieces (discard any hard ends of the mushroom stems).
4. Place the chopped veggies and apples on sheet pans, toss with the cooking oil, and add the whole coriander seeds.
5. Roast until veggies and apples are golden brown, about 2 hours, turning the ingredients approximately every 30 minutes to ensure even browning.
6. Scrape the roasted vegetables into a stockpot. To loosen the browned bits stuck to the bottom of the roasting pan, pour in 1/2 to 1 cup of cold water and scrape the bottom with a wooden spoon (this process is known as deglazing).
7. Add the cider, the remaining stock ingredients, and just enough cold water to cover the vegetables. Place the lid on the stockpot, leaving it slightly ajar, and heat the stock over medium-low heat. It should reach a simmer in approximately 1 hour. Simmer for 8 hours, adjusting the heat if necessary.
8. Strain, cool and refrigerate.