I’m kicking myself for not calling this post “Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup for a Crowd”!
I tell you what – if you find yourself hosting a whole slew of family and friends over the holidays, you’ll want to keep this recipe in your back pocket. It makes for a hearty meal that comes together pretty seamlessly and will comfortably feed the aunties, cousins and neighbors who make their way to your busy table. And, oh yeah – it’s delicious!
This Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup with a tasty autumn salad and a wedge of rosemary focaccia (<—- foreshadow), will do the trick!
I have a story for you.
Dom and I were recently in Lake Placid, and rather than run all over town from one activity to the next, we used a good measure of our time to decompress. We had some nice meals, drank plenty of coffee and fell head over heels into the books we brought along. Dom was reading Younger Next Year by Crowley & Lodge, and I, finally, after many many years of looking at it on my bookshelf, brought Virginia Woolf’s, A Room of One’s Own. Have you guys read it? Anyway – my story is not to share my review of this brilliant book (which – really – it’s Virginia Woolf – no words), but to attempt to convey the emotional response I had as a result of a sentence. Yes, a sentence. One sentence.
So, I’m reading along in my amber lit room with candles flickering and the aromas of pine and strong coffee teaming up and working very hard to lull me to sleep, when all of a sudden, on page 18, I run into it. Literally. I run into the words, “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.” OH MY GOD! You would have thought, based on my reaction, that Beyoncé was at the door. Literally – my heart raced, my stomach fluttered – I was in the company of greatness. I mean – I know this sentence. I’ve known it for many years. I’ve shared that quote on multiple occasions. And I also know it comes from Virginia. But what I didn’t know was that it came from this book. So as I was reading along – and it suddenly appears – it was like seeing an old friend who also happens to be a rock star. Do you what I mean?
I don’t know the last time I had a physical reaction to a sentence quite like this. I wanted to interrupt Dom to say, “Hey, you’ll never guess who I just ran into! Well, not who, I guess, kind of…I mean – it’s a sentence. I ran into a sentence. But it’s a famous sentence. And it’s a sentence I love and I believe in. It’s the Beyoncé of sentences.”
But I didn’t interrupt his reading. I kept it to myself until now.
So as I pondered this Beyoncé sentence – and what ‘dining well’ means to me – I had the vision of a rich and flavorful meal, enough to feed a crowd. And this soup (a recipe I learned long ago in one of my infamous community ed. courses) came to me.
And that’s my story.
Question: If you were challenged to pair a meal in honor of that rock star sentence…what would it be? I’d love to know!
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup butter, divided
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 3 ribs of celery, diced
- 1 large green pepper, diced
- 3 lbs. fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 6 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 9 cups whole milk
- 1 Tbsp. kosher salt
- 1½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp. nutmeg
- In a large heavy bottom pot, sauté garlic in 2 tablespoons butter.
- Add onion, celery and green pepper; sauté until tender.
- Add mushrooms; sauté for 5 minutes.
- Stir in chicken broth and simmer for 20 minutes.
- In a saucepan, melt remaining butter; stir in flour until smooth.
- Gradually stir in milk.
- Cook and stir over low heat until mixture comes to a boil; boil for 2 minutes while continuing to stir.
- Add to mushroom mixture.
- Stir in salt, pepper and nutmeg.
- Serve and season each bowl, to taste.