Friday, March 12, 2010

Urban Foraging For Exotic Mushrooms

Wild Rice and Mushroom Soup

We have been enjoying homemade soups and stews this winter, and one of the recipes that everyone in the house loves is Moosewood Restaurant's Wild Rice and Mushroom soup, found in the excellent cookbook, Moosewood Restaurant Daily Special.
Little Beech Mushrooms

I've been putting all kinds of mushrooms into this soup: dried shiitakes, oyster mushrooms, little beech mushrooms, trumpet mushrooms, enoki mushrooms, whatever I can find at our local Asian market, Hong Phat in Lacey, WA on College street.
Eryng and Brown Mushrooms

Hong Phat usually has 5 or 6 different kinds of fresh mushrooms from which to choose, all priced very reasonably. An 8-10 oz. package of oyster mushrooms runs about $2.59, while a 3.5 oz. pack of enoki mushrooms is $0.89. Dried shitake mushrooms cost $2-3 for 3.5 ounces, enough for 2 or 3 batches of soup.
King Trumpet Mushrooms

Swing by your local Asian market and see what tasty mushrooms you can find...then whip up this terrific soup for yourself! I usually double the recipe so we can have leftovers for lunch the next day. And I usually dump in way more than 4 ounces of wild mushrooms - I'll use a whole pack each of the oyster mushrooms, little beech mushrooms, enokis, and whatever else is in the fridge.
Enoki Mushrooms

Wild Rice & Mushroom Soup, from Moosewood Restaurant Daily Special
serves: 4-6
yields: 8 cups
total time: 45 minutes

1 cup raw wild rice
3 cups vegetable stock or water
2 tbsp. canola or olive oil
2 leeks, rinsed and chopped (or 1 small onion, chopped)
1 cups peeled and chopped carrots
1 cup diced celery
1/2 tsp. dried rosemary
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tsp. salt
4 oz. fresh wild mushrooms, rinsed, tough stem ends removed, and chopped (2 cups)
4 dried shiitake, broken into little pieces, stems discarded
4 cups water
3 tbsp. soy sauce or wheat-free tamari
1/4 cup dry sherry
ground black pepper to taste

In a heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, bring the rice and 3 cups of stock or water to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, about 45 minutes.

If you have a mortar and pestle, use it to grind up the dried rosemary and thyme before you add them to the soup.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a soup pot and saute the leeks or onions for 5 minutes. Add the carrots, celery, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves, salt, fresh mushrooms, and shiitake and saute for another 5 minutes. Stir in the water, soy sauce, and sherry and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaves.

When the rice is cooked, stir it into the soup. Add pepper to taste and serve hot.

1 comment:

Ceuson said...

Hi Chris. I want to print this off for my 3-ring binder, but it doesn't come up right on my system. Ah well, with a good night's sleep, I'll try again tomorrow. I'm at the library every Thursday, so it's time I add a trip to the Asian Grocery to the list. It looks so yummy, I want to make it this week. Ceuson