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Monday, October 28, 2013

Portobello and Wild Rice Soup

For day 28 of Soup Month 2013 we made a rustic Portobello and Wild Rice Soup.  This soup is a unique blend of ingredients that come together beautifully.   We started with the wild rice which is from Trader Joe's.  This blend contains brown rice, black barley and tiny daikon radish seeds, all of which taste great with the Portobello mushrooms.  The radish seeds add just a bit of crunch to the soup and work well with the tender mushrooms.

While the rice cooked, we went to work on the soup. First we added a few basics like onions, garlic and rosemary, beef stock and, to give this soup a creamy texture, we included two russet potatoes.  (Without adding too much potato flavor, the potatoes thickened the soup and gave it some extra heartiness.)  The mushrooms are sautéed separately and added to the soup just prior to serving.

Next, we pureed the vegetables and stock, (but not the mushrooms) using an immersion blender (or you could use a regular blender).  Once the soup was smooth, the cream and a touch of dry red wine finished off the broth.  The cooked mushrooms and rice are then added to the soup for a final 5 minutes of cooking.  This soup has a nice thickness to it, but if you prefer a thinner consistency, a little beef stock can be added at this point.  Garnish with a sprinkle of smoked paprika just before serving.

This soup tasted great served with a grilled rib eye steak and a glass of Cabernet, but it would also pair nicely with turkey or roast pork loin.  Although this soup is easy to make, it is definitely elegant enough for a holiday dinner.  Enjoy!!

1-1/4 cups  Water
1/2 cup  Trader Joe's Brown Rice Medley
1 tsp  Butter

3 TB  Butter, divided
12 oz  Portobello Mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
1 small  Onion, chopped
2 tsp  Minced Garlic
2 tsp  Fresh Rosemary, minced (or use 1/2 tsp Dried Rosemary)
2 medium  Russet Potatoes
1-1/2 cups  Beef Broth
1 cup  Heavy Cream  or  Half and Half
2 TB  Dry Red Wine
1-1/2 tsp  Kosher Salt, or more to taste
1 tsp  Ground Black Pepper

In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil, add the rice and 1 teaspoon of butter and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to a simmer and cook about 35 - 40 minutes or until water is absorbed, then remove pan from heat and rest for 10 minutes.

Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a medium soup pot over medium heat.  Sauté the mushrooms until the are just tender, about 10 minutes, then transfer the mushrooms to a bowl, cover and set aside.

Add remaining 1 tablespoon butter to the same pot, add onion and sauté for 5 minutes until softened.  Add the garlic, rosemary and potatoes to the pot, stir and cook for 5 minutes longer.

Add the beef broth to the pot and simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.  Remove the pot from the heat and puree the soup with an immersion blender.  Add the cream and red wine to the soup and simmer over low heat for 3 minutes, stirring constantly.  Add the mushrooms and cooked rice to the soup, stir and cook over low heat for 5 minutes.  (If you prefer a thinner soup, just add a little extra broth to the soup.)

Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with a sprinkle of smoked paprika.  Enjoy!!

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