In winter, when there is a shortage of fresh local produce in many areas, some of us turn to mushrooms for a meaty, earthy taste treat. Mushrooms are such a great stand-in for those who avoid meat: Chewy and robust, but with no cholesterol or saturated fat. This recipe also uses nutty, satisfying wild rice, which isnít actually a rice but a kind of grass introduced to American settlers by the indigenous people.
The soup is quick to make, has a rich mushroom flavor, and is definitely low in fat.
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1/3 cup wild rice
6 to 7 cups vegetable stock
4 cloves garlic, chopped
4 to 6 ounces each of three kinds of fresh dark mushrooms (shiitake, oyster, Portobello, etc) or 1 ounce each if using dry mushrooms
1 carrot, peeled and cut into matchstick-sized strips
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
1. Saute the onion and wild rice for 2 minutes in the butter in a medium-sized saucepan. Stir in the vegetable stock. Cover and simmer 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Add chopped garlic, cover again, and simmer another 15 minutes, until the rice is almost tender. Add the mushrooms and simmer, covered, for another 10 minutes. (You can make the soup up to this point a day ahead and refrigerate.)
3. Just before serving, stir the carrot strips into the soup and simmer for 2 minutes until the carrots are crisp and tender. Season with salt and pepper.