To be honest, posting this vegan cream of mushroom soup recipe with everything going on in the world felt trite.
Ant-racism is not something to check off your to-do list. (Thank you Hitha Palepu for that reminder in your newsletter this week). Fighting for reform is a marathon, not a sprint. Unpacking my own shortcomings and learning to do better takes much longer than a few weeks. Amplifying BIPOC voices should be something we all pledge to do for eternity.
I’ve been doing the everyday prompts in Rachel Cargle’s #DoTheWork program and it is helping me take it one day at a time. Know that even if I’m not shouting from the rooftops about it here, I’ve got my pile of homework and I’m slowly making my way through it. Change is a slow burn, and I’m not doing it for your approval, but to live up to my own values in a way that I realize I wasn’t fully before.
At the same time that I am doing some uncomfortable work on my own, I’ll be sticking with what I am good at—sharing easier ways to feed yourself, heal your gut, and learn more about your mental and physical health. That will include continuing to share anti-racism resources that I’ve found helpful, and ways that each of us can change our healthcare and social justice systems to work better for everyone.
I realize it isn’t about saying the right thing here on the blog. It’s about doing the right thing when no one is watching but you. So here you go–a delicious creamless cream of mushroom soup for cool early summer nights.
It’s from Pamela Salzman’s new book Quicker Than Quick. This recipe doesn’t use any cream gimmicks like coconut milk, cashews or white beans. You get the smooth, luscious texture simply by pureeing half the soup itself. That’s it. The mushrooms lighten in color once liquified and create both body and a creamy looking broth. I couldn’t believe how well Pamela’s technique worked.
I had some lactose-free sour cream that I used as garnish, but you can use plant-based or regular yogurt and whatever herbs you have on hands to add a little elegance.
Read on for this vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup recipe, and use it to fuel all the other work we have to do.
With health and hedonism,
Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup
This Creamless Mushroom Soup is reprinted with permission from Pamela Salzman's fabulous book Quicker Than Quick. She offers some topping suggestions - I loved using plant-based sour cream and fresh parsley!
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
- ½ large onion diced
- 1 large leek washed, white and light green parts sliced*
- 2 medium carrots peeled and diced
- 2 medium stalks celery diced
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 large sprig fresh thyme
- 2 pounds whole cremini or white mushrooms wiped clean with a damp paper towel, sliced**
- 5-6 cups vegetable or mushroom stock
- 1 Tablespoon shoyu, tamari or coconut aminos
- 1-2 teaspoons sea salt depending on saltiness of the stock
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- optional accompaniments: minced fresh chives vegan Kite Hill cream, cheese, crème fraiche, truffle oil, a few sliced mushrooms that have been sauteed
Melt the butter over medium heat in a large stockpot. Add the onion, leek, carrots, celery, and garlic, and sauté until the onions are tender and translucent, about 7-8 minutes.
Stir in the thyme and fresh mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms have softened, about 5 minutes. Add the stock, shoyu, salt and pepper and simmer, covered for 30 minutes.
Remove the sprig of thyme. With an immersion blender, puree half the soup (or all of it if you want a smooth soup) in the pot or carefully puree in batches in a food processor or blender. Taste for seasoning. Serve with suggested accompaniments, if desired.
*Wash and save the dark green part of the leeks in the freezer for the next time you make chicken or vegetable stock.
**For a time-saver, buy pre-cleaned and pre-sliced mushrooms or slice in food processor
Other suggestions: cook rice or cauliflower rice in the soup. Add with the stock.
***It’s nice to add a drizzle of wine such as Madeira or Sherry at the end before serving.
For an extra boost of deep mushroom flavor, add 1 ounce (around .06 pound) dried wild mushrooms, ground in a coffee grinder or spice grinder to the pot in step 2. This will also thicken the soup, so go with the 6 cups of stock.