We are about to have soup weather! My favorite time of year. Plus, my house guests brought me huge boxes of mushrooms from Kennett Square, the mushroom capital. I LOVE mushrooms. So, I made mushroom barley soup.
They also bought me dried mushrooms which I can never get enough of. I use them all the time.
All you do is add water to them and microwave for a minute and let them soak for about 20 minutes or so.
I started out with the button mushrooms first.
I sliced them thin and then sliced them in half.
Then I tackled the shii-take.
The stems on these should be removed because they are rather woody. Then I sliced them thin too.
Dice one large onion and saute' it in a few tablespoons of butter.
Add a bit more butter and saute' the mushrooms along with the onions.
Scoop the dried mushrooms out of the water and dice them and add them to the pot. Save the liquid.
Add several diced celery stalks and a few diced carrots.
Pour in the dried mushroom liquid but strain out anything that has settled at the bottom.
I also added some mushroom demi glace. Add about 10 cups of beef stock.
Dice a bunch of fresh dill and set it aside.
Sprinkle in about 3 tablespoons of Vegeta.
Taste it for seasoning and add some pepper and salt if needed.
Bring it to a rolling boil.
I could not believe I was out of barley but I did have this box of barley, spelt and brown rice so it is what I used. Add 2 cups of barley or this mix and let the soup simmer for about 40 minutes.
I also made some rosemary no knead bread to go with this. If you make this bread, try this new tip. Add twice the amount of yeast. I did it by accident and had even better results than the original recipe. It rose much faster then the 18 hours in the original recipe and turns out a much lighter bread.
When the soup is done, add the fresh dill.
This is the best mushroom barley soup I have ever tasted. With a piece of the rosemary no knead bread, it is a complete dinner.