October 16th, 2008
My wild mushroom week is overlapping into this week and I don’t mind. I made an earthy, delicious soup with my cauliflower mushrooms that I had to share. Their cooked texture makes me think of rice noodles. I think they would be fun with a stroganoff sauce over them or a Thai sauce. A simple saute in garlic, olive oil and Earth Balance is all it needs to bring out the depth of flavor, but these babies are big and needed to be used in more than one dish. By the way, I sauteed it for about 10 minutes and I feel fine. I’m not sure of the ideal cook time, I’ve seen it used in 40 minute baked casseroles and I’ve seen a 3 minute boil followed by a 2 minute saute. I think the fresher it is, the less you have to cook it to make the tough go away.
This soup can be substituted any way you like it. Play around with the mushrooms and the grain. It’s a simple dish and comforting for that cold weather coming. It’s closely based off of a Leslie Cerier recipe. Enjoy!
A Soup that doesn’t contain Lobsters or Cauliflower
Yield: 4 hungry people
- 3 cups chopped cauliflower mushroom
- 1/2 cup rice milk (or other)
- 7 cups water, divided
- 1/2 cup pearled barley
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 Tbl dried shiitake
- 1 Tbl dried porcini
- 1 Tbl olive oil
- 1 medium onion, medium diced (1 cup)
- 1/2 carrot, 1/4″ rounds (1/2 cup)
- 1 rib celery, 1/4″ slices (1/4 cup)
- 3 cups sliced lobster mushroom
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp dried sage
- 1 tsp sea salt, or more to taste
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- parsley for garnish
- Soak cauliflower mushroom in milk. I’m not sure if this accomplishes anything, but I read it makes it more tender. I think the ideal is 30 minutes but I forgot about it and it was more like an hour.
- In a stockpot, combine half of the water, barley and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 40 minutes.
- Bring the remaining water to a boil in a separate pan and once it reaches a boil, turn off the heat. Add the dried mushrooms and allow that to soak for at least 20 minutes. (Good timing to get it started while the barley is cooking).
- Heat the oil in a skillet of your choice and saute the onions for about 5 minutes.
- Add the carrots, celery and lobster mushrooms and saute for 10-15 minutes or until the lobsters are soft and you don’t feel scared to eat them. A lot of water should be cooked off at this point, but you don’t want too dry a pan.
- While the lobsters are cooking, strain the cauliflower mushrooms from the milk and add it to the simmering barley mixture along with the dried mushroom water. Return mixture to a simmer and continue cooking for 10-15 minutes (you can time this together with the lobster mushrooms).
- Add the sauteed lobster mixture to the soup with the wine, thyme, sage, salt and pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes more, balance salt to your palette and serve with some parsely to liven it up.