Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Cream of Mushroom Soup (Pressure cooker or not)

Okay, you don't need to cook this in the pressure cooker - it's perfectly fine on the stove, simmering in a pot, but the pressure cooker speeds up the process of getting the soup tasting more like mushrooms and less like mushrooms floating in chicken stock.

The pinch of salt here is to help the vegetables release their moisture. Don't add too much, particularly if your stock has salt in it. I don't add salt to my homemade stock, but store-bought can be salty, depending on the brand.

The wine is also optional if you don't happen to have any on hand, but it does add a little something extra. Sherry is particularly nice, but a white wine would be fine, too. Red could work, but I'm not sure what it would do to the color of the soup.

You don't actually need the Better than Bouillon, but it adds more mushroom flavor to the soup. If you omit it, there's no need to add a substitute. Just carry on.

Cream of Mushroom Soup

1 tablespoon butter
1 shallot diced
1 pound crimini or button mushrooms (or your favorite), cleaned and sliced
Tiny pinch of salt
Generous grinds of black pepper
1/4 cup wine (white is nice; sherry is awesome)
1 tablespoon Better than Bouillon mushroom stock (optional)
1 quart chicken or vegetable stock (home made is best, but packaged is fine)
Leaves from 1 sprig of thyme
1 cup heavy cream

Melt the butter in the electric pressure cooker (Instant Pot or other brand), then add the shallots, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the shallots are soft.

Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring as needed, until they're soft and they've given up liquid and they're simmering.

Add the wine and mushroom stock and continue cooking until most of the liquid is gone, stirring as needed.

Add the vegetable stock and thyme and give the soup a stir. Put the lid on and switch to high pressure. Set the timer for 15 minutes. When the time is up, release the pressure. Stir in the cream, taste for seasoning, and add more salt or pepper, if desired. Serve hot.

Note: The leftovers will separate into layers of stock and cream, but don't fret. Just stir it, and it will come back together, just like it was before.