Cookbook review – Soup Nights

One of the cookbooks I got for Christmas is by a writer that I’ve followed for years – Betty Rosbottom.  Her column used to appear in the Baltimore Sun and I clipped out many of her recipes over the years.  I have a prior soup cookbook of hers and an appetizer cookbook – both of which I’ve enjoyed.  Her newest book is Soup Nights and I made an asparagus soup with seared scallops from it shortly after acquiring it.

It is very cold here so a soup dinner seemed like a good idea.  I selected a mushroom soup en croute and made a few tweaks.

Mushroom soup

  • 1 oz package dried porcini mushrooms
  • 4 TB butter
  • 8 oz cremini mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
  • 4 – 6 oz shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
  • 3 – 4 large shallots, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
  • 2 TB sherry
  • 2 cups homemade chicken stock
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry
  • 1 TB grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 tsp water

Soak porcini mushrooms in 1 cup of boiling water for about 20 minutes.  Line a mesh strainer with a coffee filter and pour the liquid through, reserving.  Chop porcini mushrooms and set aside.

In a heavy pan, heat butter over medium heat.  Add cremini and shiitake mushrooms, shallots and celery and cook, stirring occasionally until soft (about 5 minutes).  Add garlic, rosemary and sherry and stir to combine.  Then add chicken stock, porcini mushrooms and the strained liquid from the mushrooms.  Simmer for about 5 minutes.

You could just serve the soup at this point but since it’s cold I went ahead and did the crust.  I thawed a sheet of frozen puff pastry, sprinkled Parmesan cheese on half of it and then folded it over.  I rolled it out with a rolling pin, brushed it with the egg mixture and then put it egg side down on the soup bowls.  Then I put them in the fridge until 20 minutes before dinner.  Put in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes in some ancient French onion soup bowls that haven’t been used in a really long time.  (Samantha was quite intrigued by the soup bowls so had chicken chipotle chili in one of them.)

Here is how they turned out.  I made a mache salad with grilled Haloumi cheese and a shallot dressing to go with the soup. (Samantha likes the Haloumi by itself.)

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About emenuplan
I love to cook and love to eat. I work full time and have a family so managing good meals during the week requires organization. I'm hoping to share my weekly menu plans and recipes to make things a little easier for those who want to follow along.

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