Warm up with a bowl of hot mushroom soup, flavoured with a dash of Italian wine for a bit of a kick. Why not serve with a slice of garlic bread?
- 25-30g packet dried mixed mushrooms
- 30g (1oz) butter
- 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
- 250g (8oz) chestnut mushrooms, chopped
- 1 vegetable stock cube
- 4tbsp Marsala (Italian wine) or Madeira
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Chives, for garnish
Pour 600ml (1 pint) of boiling water into a jug and add the dried mushrooms. Leave the mushrooms to soak for about 20-30 mins.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan and add the onion. Cook the onion over a medium heat for about 5 mins until it starts to soften. Add the chopped chestnut mushrooms to the pan and cook for a further 5 mins until the mushrooms soften.
Pour 300ml (½ pint) boiling water into the pan and crumble in the stock cube.
Reserve a few of the soaked mushrooms for garnish and add the rest and the soaking liquid to the saucepan. Bring the mixture in the saucepan to the boil, cover the pan and simmer the soup for about 15 mins.
Remove the pan from the heat and purée the soup in a liquidiser, food processor or using a stick blender. Stir in the Marsala or Madeira and season to taste.
Reheat the soup if necessary, and serve it garnished with the reserved mushrooms and a few snipped chives.
The cold soup can be packed into a suitable container and frozen for up to 1 month. Allow the soup to defrost before reheating it thoroughly.
The garnish is not suitable for freezing, so if the soup is going to be frozen, add all of the mushrooms to the pan without reserving any for garnish.