Cozy Potato-Mushroom Soup
Lately, all I want to eat is soup. And on this gray, rainy day, despite the warm temperatures, I was craving something like potato-leek soup. Only I had just one leek in the produce drawer and, since I’m cooking for a vegetarian, couldn’t make use of the rich chicken stock I made last week.
I find that the quality of store-bought vegetable stocks can vary, so I wanted a soup with strong enough flavors that it would taste good regardless of how tepid my stock turned out to be. So I used onions instead of leeks and added garlic, a little celery, vermouth (a totally underutilized ingredient these days, in my opinion), and dried mushrooms to kick up the earthy flavors. The result was delicious, so I’m sharing it here with you.
Total time: 45 minutes
Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Yield: 8 servings
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 large garlic cloves, miniced
- 1 stalk celery, diced
- 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2/3 cup dry vermouth
- 3 pounds Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
- ¾ ounce dried mushrooms, crumbled (I use porcini)
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- ½ cup light cream
- Garnish: parsley or celery leaves
Melt butter in a Dutch Oven over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and celery, and cook until onion is translucent, about 6 minutes. Add salt and pepper and stir. Cook until onions begin to turn golden, about 3 minutes more. Stir in vermouth, scraping any browned bits from the bottom.
Add the potatoes, mushrooms, and bay leaves to the pot, then pour in the stock. Increase heat to high and bring liquid to a boil, then quickly reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Cook until potatoes are very tender, about 15 minutes.
Remove bay leaves from the mixture, then puree the soup in batches in a blender (you can also use an immersion blender). Return mixture to pot and stir in cream. Taste for seasonings and add more salt if needed. Serve hot, garnished with celery leaves or parsley.
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