When Mushrooms Go Wrong + Recipe: Gruyere Cream Cheese Mushroom Soup

I love mushrooms. I love their earthy taste especially when roasted. I love that they are capable of absorbing and releasing flavors depending on the dish. Deep-fried, stir-fried, braised, stuffed, stewed, grilled, or even raw, I’ll add a fungus to my dish any time the opportunity presents itself.

I have several mushroom soup recipes in my collection in an attempt to squeeze out as much shroom flavor from the edible fungi. One of my fave varieties is the shiitake mushroom. Shiitakes cook very well, and have a sweet-smoky-earthy taste that I enjoy with herbs and especially garlic. Since I started off the 2018 year stricken with laryngitis, my food consumption options were limited. Liquids were the least painful medium to get some nutrition into me.

I’ve whipped up a couple of slow-cooker mushroom soup recipes, working with standard whites, baby bellas and shiitakes tossed in homemade turkey broth along with garlic and some form of dairy. In my most recent attempt, I roasted a 30oz batch of shiitakes then immersion blended it in along with aforementioned liquids.

The result was too strong to be edible for most folks. Shiitakes are already naturally earthy and smoky, but it seemed too much made for an overwhelming amount of acrid smokiness in a soup that should have been creamy-but-mildly earthy. Nearly 2lbs of shrooms resulted in a thick, gloppy concoction…and even my attempts to puree it in my Oster blender still left a slight grittiness to it.

Not good if your throat is still recovering from severe inflammation and is prone to irritation.

So let that be the lesson…there is too much of a good thing, even if it is mushrooms.

  • 2 tbsp Extra Light virgin olive oil
  • 3.5oz Neufchatel, 1/3 less fat cream cheese
  • 3oz gruyere cheese, shredded or grated or cubed
  • 16oz white mushrooms, sliced
  • 8oz heavy whipping cream (non-dairy: almond, coconut milk)
  • 24oz of homemade turkey stock (chicken, beef okay too)
  • .5 tsp xanthan gum (for thickener)
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • .5 tbsp ground black pepper
  • .25 tsp sea salt
  • 8oz baby bella mushrooms

Simmer turkey broth and cream in slow cooker over high heat for 15-20 minutes.

In a pan over medium heat, toss 16oz of white mushrooms in olive oil until softened and fat is absorbed. Remove from stovetop and pour into slow cooker. Using an immersion blender, puree mushrooms until liquid is thick and shrooms are incorporated. Take care, this mixture is hot!

Add the rest of the ingredients, including whole bellas, and slow cook for 2-4 hours.

When ready to serve, sprinkle with chopped parsley and shredded parmesan cheese, or make oven-roasted cheese crisps.

Nutrition calculator:

Calories 137 (per 4oz serving)

Total Fat 10.7 g

Total Carbohydrate 5.1 g

Dietary Fiber .7 g

Sugars 1.6 g

Protein 4.9 g

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