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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cream of Mushroom Soup & Garlic Bread

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Home is where the heart is! Do you agree with me? This tag line will definitely capture everybody's attention, especially during weekends where we spend most of the time at home. For a working mum like me, I would spend my weekend at home preparing most heart-warming meals for my family. Today, I would like to spread some heart-warming recipes to you whom wish to spend a warm and relaxing evening with the family.

Since it is a rainy season here, having something warm and soothing are one of the most tantalizing meals at home. A bowl of warm Cream of Mushroom Soup with some Homemade Garlic Bread will definitely make your heart warm in the evening. Don't you? Cream of mushroom soup and garlic bread are my family all time favourite. Instead of having them outside where contain plenty of artificial seasonings, why not we have it fresh & pure at home?

This recipe has been improved from my previous Cream of mushroom recipe. Besides, I have also made some garlic bread to savor with the mushroom soup! This is indeed a prefect combination for an evening break or snack! Agree?
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Mushrooms contain 80 - 90% of water and very low in calories, they are also low in sodium and fat, a prefect source of fiber, ideal food for weight management. Besides, mushrooms are an excellent source of potassium, a rich source of riboflavin, niacin, and selenium.

"According to this site, Crimini Mushrooms also know as Brown Button or Italian Brown have a distinct rich brown or tan colour. Crimini have an earthy rich flavour when they are cooked and a nutty creamy taste when raw. They may be used in dishes together with white button mushrooms or alone in soups, stew, salads and side dishes."
Reference from BCMUSHROOMS
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"Crimini or brown button mushrooms are coffee colored and richer in flavor and nutrients than the more common white button mushroom, crimini mushrooms are available throughout the year."

Thus, I chose Swiss Brown button mushroom this round to find out the differences compare to white button mushroom. To my surprised, it really brings out more flavour to my mushroom soup! With some bay leaves, it enhances the taste, at the same time it brings fragrant smell to the soup.

"Mushrooms are as mysteriously unique as they are delicious. While often thought of as a vegetable and prepared like one, mushrooms are actually a fungus, a special type of living organism that has no roots, leaves, flowers or seeds. While mushroom can be cultivated, they can also be found growing wild in many regions of the world."

Tips on How to Select and Store:
• Look for mushrooms that are firm, plump and clean.
• Those that are wrinkled or have wet slimy spots should be avoided. Since mushrooms darken as they age, choose those that are either creamy white or tan, depending upon whether you are purchasing white or Crimini mushrooms.

Tips for Preparing Mushrooms:
• Mushrooms are so porous that if they are exposed to too much water, they will quickly absorb it and become soggy.
• Therefore, the best way to clean mushrooms without sacrificing their texture and taste is to clean them using minimal, if any, water.
• Wipe them with a slightly damp paper towel or kitchen cloth. You could also use a mushroom brush, available at most kitchenware stores.
Reference from WHFOODS
Check out variety of mushrooms here!


This recipe is based on my own preference:
Serves 4

Ingredients:
200gm Fresh Swiss Brown Button Mushroom
1 medium-sized Celery
1 medium-sized White Onion
400ml Chicken stock/broth
250ml Fresh Milk (I used Dutch Lady fresh milk)
3 tbsp Butter
3 tbsp Plain flour
2 medium-sized Dried Bay Leaves
Salt & Black pepper to taste

Methods:
1. Rinse button mushroom with colander then pat dry with a dry cloth.
2. Slice button mushroom. Set aside.
3. Chop celery and white onion coarsely. Rinse bay leaves and set aside.
4. Heat up pan, add butter and let it melt, immediately add in onion. Sautee until onion is translucent.
5. Add in celery and sautee for another minute. Add mushrooms, sautee until mushrooms turn brown or until the water in the mushrooms have suppressed. Stir in flour and mix well.
6. Pour in chicken stock/broth, add bay leaves. Simmer under medium heat for 20 mins.
7. Add in fresh milk and simmer for another 10 mins under low heat. Stir occasionally. (Do not over-boil the milk)
8. Let the soup cool a little. Transfer to a blender, blend batch by batch and pour to another pot.
9. If you prefer some chunky mushroom texture, do not blend too long.
10. Add salt and black pepper to taste.
11. Dish up to a soup bowl, serve while hot with homemade garlic bread.

Chicken broth recipe:
Boil 550ml water, add in half of whole chicken (in chunks or pieces).
You may use those remaining chicken bones to make this broth.
Simmer under medium heat for 1 hour. Drained, sieved with colander and set aside. Make sure the chicken broth is sufficient for the above recipe.

Homemade Garlic Bread recipe:
Ingredients:
French loaf or English bread ( I used wholemeal bread)
Garlic powder
Butter spread
Italian herbs (basil, oregano or parsley)
Grated parmesan cheese (optional)

Methods:
1. Cut french loaf or English bread into slices.
2. Spread butter on each slices. Sprinkle garlic powder.
3. Sprinkle parmesan cheese and Italian herbs.
4. Baked at 400ºF for 5 - 10 mins or until cheese is melted and bread turns crispy.
5. You may need to adjust the temperature and timing according to your oven.

13 Comentários:

celine said...

both are my all-time fav. i have not tried making it at home, but yours looks yummy, oozing with "homemade is best" feel.

Bits of Taste said...

Hi Celine, thanks for dropping by! oh yes! Both are perfect partner! Thanks for your kind words!

Little Corner of Mine said...

Beautiful pictures and a great combo! I love these two together, delicious!

pigpigscorner said...

ahhh...I want a bowl of this! The garlic bread is great with this!

Kitchen Corner said...

That's a real comfort food. It's my favorite soup and bread. Delicious!

Food For Tots said...

Looks so good! A perfect combo for me too! They are my family all-time favourite.

noobcook said...

What a lovely meal of soup and bread. Yum!!

tigerfish said...

This is the kind of mushroom soup I like. Dark in colour - meaning lots of mushrooms. ;p

The Little Teochew said...

Beautiful soup! Perfect on cold days, which are having :)

Bits of Taste said...

LCOF: Thanks a lot!

PPC : Thanks! I love garlic bread too!

F4T : Thanks LK! Yeah! Simply perfect!

KC : I agreed!

noobcook : Thanks! Wiffy!

Tigerfish : You are such a real foodie, me too prefer lots of mushroom in the soup!

TLT : Thanks! Oh yeah, lovely!

~lely~ said...

its raining again, makes me crave for these!!! must convince my partner to dish this for me... hehehe

Bits of Taste said...

Thanks lely! haha... you should give it a try! It is nice to enjoy this dish with your dear one!

mycookinghut said...

I really like mushroom soup! Sometimes, I love to add lots of black pepper.. ehehhe.. garlic bread is nice!!

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