The last few days have left me exhausted, and I wanted mushroom soup last night. M was at New Market, and we had decided on a shopping spree, which resulted in a kilo and half of strawberries, a huge pack of red chillies, which would be pickled or pasted soon, and two kinds of mushrooms. I got some lovely meaty oyster mushrooms and some creamy white button mushrooms, and added a little bit of fresh parsley to my loot. The result? Hot mushroom soup.
I came home, washed, chopped, blended, and dinner was ready in under 30 minutes! I had my bowl of soup and eyed my sister’s share. She ran away.
Clean about 300 gm. mushrooms for two big bowls of this soup. I used a combination of button and oyster mushrooms, both fresh, but feel free to use your own combination. Heat a teaspoon of oil and add 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced. Fry till the garlic is fragrant, and then add the mushrooms along with 1/2 teaspoon salt, tossing and cooking over gentle heat for 4-5 minutes. You would find a lot of mushroom juices come out. I would suggest draining as much of it as possible, and ensure the mushrooms are becoming dry. Once they are dry, add 1/2 teaspoon butter, and 1 teaspoon flour, and mix everything well, till the mushrooms are coated with flour, and the flour is no longer raw, about 3-4 minutes over medium heat.
Pour in 1 cup milk (low-fat is fine) slowly and stir very well till there are no lumps of flour. Add the reserved liquid from the mushrooms, 1/2 cup water, and a tablespoon of chopped parsley. Let everything come to boil, then turn off the heat. When the mushrooms are cooled slightly, take half (or all of it if you like), and blend in a food processor (or immersion blender, or a mixer), till they are of the texture you like (I like to get some whole mushrooms, so I only blend half of it). Pour the blended soup back in the pot, heat till everything boils, adjust seasoning, and serve, sprinkled with more parsley. I love this with crunchy toast. If you like, you can enhance this, by adding chicken stock instead of water, or replacing milk with half and half or cream, to add to the creaminess. You can also substitute the milk with soy milk and/or flour for rice flour for a gluten-free vegan version.