It's mid-October, and we are experiencing triple-digit heat here in California. My body doesn't know what to do. It wants to wear boots, and cozy sweaters. But it's so hot. IT'S SO HOT. For the love of Autumn, someone turn off the heat. Because guess what? I CAN'T STOP MAKING SOUP. I hope you hear me Father Pumpkin or Mother Nature or whoever is responsible for this. Because this mushroom soup I made last night was damn good. I'm going to turn up the air conditioner and finish it all right now.
Creamy Mushroom Soup
12 oz. sliced mushrooms (a variety: shiitake, portabella, crimini, etc)
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 leek (white and pale green part only), cleaned and diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
3 sprigs of thyme
1 T flour
1/2 cup white wine
4 cups beef stock (or vegetable)
1/2 cup cream
Salt and pepper
Melt butter over low heat in a large pot. Add leeks, garlic and stir. Cover and saute for 20 minutes over the lowest heat, so the garlic does not burn. Uncover, raise heat to medium and add mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until mushrooms begin to brown, 10 minutes or so.
Sprinkle mushrooms with flour and stir for one minute to cook flour. Raise heat to medium-high and add white wine and thyme sprigs (you will remove the stems later). Saute for a few minutes, until wine starts to thicken and reduce.
Add beef stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 20 minutes.
Uncover and stir in cream. Remove from heat. Using an immersion blender, puree soup (I like to keep it slightly chunky). Season again with salt and pepper to taste. (If you don't have an immersion blender, you could transfer to a blender or food processor.) Make sure to remove thyme stems.
Serve with a dollop of creme fraiche or sour cream. Sprinkle with chives.