Mushroom Soup with Chives
A flavoursome, earthy mushroom soup. Serve with crusty bread for a warming lunch or supper.
MARK STOWER, DIRECTOR OF FOOD AND SERVICE
- Preparation time: 10 mins
- Cooking time: 25 mins
- Serves: 4
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add chopped onions. Sauté without colour.
Add the garlic and mushrooms and cook for a couple of minutes. Remove a few of the cooked mushrooms and keep to one side for later use as a garnish.
Add the leeks, vegetable stock and milk and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20 minutes.
Use a stick blender to blend the soup in the pan. Check the consistency and if it’s too thick, add some more vegetable stock. Season with salt and pepper.
To serve, pour into bowls and garnish with a few sliced mushrooms, a sprinkling of chopped chives and a drizzle of olive oil.
There is evidence that mushrooms were eaten in Ancient Rome, Greece, and South America, but concerns about safety of these delicacies were obviously uppermost as the Roman emperors had official tasters to ensure that the mushrooms to be consumed were not poisonous!
Most of the mushrooms we eat in the UK are white and chestnut mushrooms. They provide some protein and are low in calories – until you fry them in oil or butter when they take up a lot of fat!
Mushrooms are a surprisingly rich source of quite a few B vitamins – riboflavin (B2), niacin and pantothenic acid. They are also the only plant source of vitamin D, but only if they are grown in daylight or are artificially exposed to ultra-violet light.
The human body uses sunlight to convert a chemical in our skin to make vitamin D3 and in a similar way, mushrooms make a slightly different version of the vitamin - D2. We can use both types of vitamin D for the absorption of calcium needed to maintain bone health.
This recipe is packed full of mushrooms and technically provides two of your daily 5 portions of veg and fruit but remember that it’s also important to eat whole vegetables and fruit every day - as well as puréed ones in soups - because they are important for extra fibre.
Dr Juliet Gray, Company Nutritionist