About this Recipe
There is nothing quite like homemade soup. To us it is one of the ultimate comfort foods. I especially like to make soup when I know company is coming and that they have been traveling from some distance away. Often after a long trip, one does not feel like a big heavy meal but most certainly a warm bowl of homemade soup always seems to be so settling. Soup making is very basic and you can alter the flavor just by changing a few ingredients.
This soup has offers a nice mushroom flavor. We used butternut squash along with the potatoes as they add a nice bit of color to the pot. We did not cream this soup and often we will cream a potato soup but in this case we knew we'd be serving it to a group that doesn't drink dairy milk. Because the mushrooms are fried in the butter before the broth was added it brought up the mushroom flavor exactly to our liking.
1. Frying the onions, garlic, and celery and mushrooms before adding the broth makes your kitchen smell yummy and enhances the flavors.
2. We really enjoy using the tetra packs of organic Chicken broth in our kitchen. Whatever you decide to use, know that different brands have their own flavors. Choose a brand that is not loaded with preservatives or too much sodium.
3. We used white mushrooms for this soup. When you clean mushrooms, don't soak them too long in water as they will absorb it and get mushy. It is better to just rinse each one individually and use a vegetable brush if they are very dirty. We sometimes peel the skins off the mushrooms if they don't look very nice and we only use the stem if it is a nice light color and not too blackened.
4. Soups are a good way to use up the leafy celery tops which is what we did for this pot of soup. If using the celery stalk, cut it nice and thin.
Makes 6 cups
2 Tablespoons butter
1/2 onion, chopped into small pieces
1 garlic clove, minced
1 celery rib, or the leafy tops, 1/2 cup worth, finely sliced
10-12 white mushrooms, medium size, cleaned and sliced
2-3 russet potatoes, peeled, chopped into small cubes (4 cups worth)
1 small butternut squash, peeled and chopped into small cubes (2 cups worth)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
4 cups chicken broth (946ml tetra pack)
1. Prepare all the vegetables. Melt the butter into your soup pot and add the onions and garlic. Cook a few minutes over medium heat until soft.
2. Add the celery and cook 2 minutes longer.
3. Add the mushrooms and cook a few minutes until they are soft.
4. Add the salt and pepper and stir together.
5. Add the potatoes, squash and soup broth. Bring to a boil,then turn down to a gentle boil and cook for 20 minutes.
6. Serve. Soup will keep refrigerated for several days.
Do you like to grow things?
What herbs are fun to grow in container boxes and small herb gardens?
As spring is arriving for many of us that experience all four seasons I already have my outside planter boxes cleaned up and ready to receive the first batch of herbs from my local garden center.
Some basic herbs that you can usually buy already growing in small 4-inch containers are parsley, various types of thyme and oregano, tarragon, sage, dill and rosemary. A big favorite is basil but you need to be patient and wait to plant that outside until the nights are no longer cold.
What a difference having these fresh herbs to add to your recipes will make! Having even one container planter is lots of fun. These fresh little plants smell so aromatic when you give them a 'little tickle'.
I also like to grow a little bit of green onions and arugula. You don't need more than a few small pieces to enhance the food you are eating.
To a recipe such as this potato mushroom soup, I would of added about a teaspoon of freshly chopped dill and the same of parsley. Many grocery stores now sell live plants in the grocery section as well and they usually sell for about $3.00 or so a plant. If you have never had a live herb garden growing off your balcony you may want to give it a try! You can even just leave them indoors on our countertop and they will last quite awhile, unless of course you eat them quicker than they can grow back.