Now that we are in October I can safely say that I am ready for soup season. The air is definitely chillier and that's when I start craving soup. If you've been reading this blog for a while you will know that I love soup. I have a whole category just for soup, it's one of my favourite things to make and to eat. And Autumn is the perfect time to start making some nice comforting soup. This creamy mushroom soup is one of the best soups I have made, but I could be biased. Maybe I just love this soup because of all the mushrooms. I think I could happily live on mushrooms alone. So if you are a mushroom lover like me this one is for you!
Soup is my comfort food, it's the food I want most when the weather turns colder or if I'm feeling under the weather. This creamy mushroom soup is rich but not too heavy as there isn't too much cream in it. However it is quite filling, but don't worry, it's waist-friendly and comes in at just 154 calories per serving. So, great if you are weight watching! But I guarantee you won't feel like this is diet food. And here's a little bonus, you could get 50% of your daily recommended vitamin D from just one bowl of this lovely soup. Not bad hey? So you could have this for lunch or dinner, or you could take it to work in a flask for a nice warm and tasty lunch. This soup will keep in the fridge for a couple of days but mine didn't last that long!
Now for these croutons, they are optional but I definitely recommend them. These croutons are garlicky and cheesy and have just the right amount of thyme so that they go perfectly with this soup. You will have some leftover if you do make them, they will keep in an airtight container for up to a week and are great in salads or stews. You may also find that they make for very tasty little snacks too. They are really easy to make and definitely better than any you will buy in the store.
Creamy Mushroom Soup with Croutons
- 1 brown onion (200g) finely chopped
- 30 g butter
- 500 g chestnut mushrooms wiped clean then roughly sliced or chopped
- 2 sprigs of thyme
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 600 ml low sodium vegetable stock
- 1 pinch of sea salt
- A small pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 level tbs plain flour
- ¼ tsp freshly cracked black pepper plus more for seasoning
- 3 tbs double cream
For the thyme, garlic & parmesan croutons
- 200 g sourdough bread cut into cubes
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 fat clove of garlic sliced lengthways
- A sprig of thyme leaves removed and stalk discarded
- 25 g parmesan cheese finely grated
- A small pinch of sea salt
- Make the croutons first. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C, 356 F I use a fan assisted electric oven, please adjust according to your own oven.
- Heat the oil in a skillet over a medium to high heat. Add the garlic and thyme leaves, cook for about 2 minutes then remove the garlic. Carefully transfer the oil to a large bowl then add the bread. Mix with a large spoon so the bread is lightly coated in the oil. Spread the bread out on a baking tray and bake in the middle of the oven for 8 minutes.Remove the tray from the oven then sprinkle the parmesan over the croutons, toss the croutons a little then return to the oven and bake for another 5 minutes. They should be crispy and golden brown. Remove from the oven sprinkle with the sea salt and leave to cool.Keep any leftover croutons in an airtight container and use within a week.
- While the croutons are baking start making the soup. Melt the butter in a large saucepan, add the onion and gently cook for about 5 minutes until the onion is soft. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Then add the mushrooms, thyme, nutmeg, salt and black pepper, turn up the heat to medium hot and cook the mushrooms for about 10 minutes until they release all their juicy goodness.
- Now sprinkle the mushrooms with the flour and add the stock, stir then leave to simmer for about 10 minutes. Test the seasoning and add more pepper if you need it. Remove the thyme sprig when the soup has thickened slightly then turn off the heat and blend the soup with a hand blender.
- Once the soup is smooth return it to the heat, add the cream and bring the soup to a fast simmer. Serve immediately with the croutons.
*Calories are approximate and are only for the soup.
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