Mushroom Bisque Soup

Marye Audet
Mushroom Bisque is a simple gourmet food.

Mushroom bisque soup is a velvety soup known for having strong flavors and being heavily seasoned. Traditional bisque is a seafood soup that hales from France. However, other creamy soups such as mushroom and squash have also become known as "bisque."

Ingredients for Mushroom Bisque Soup

The best Mushroom bisque begins with fresh, quality ingredients. Mushrooms should be plump, clean, and firm. Organic items should be used when possible. Using the best possible ingredients will ensure the most rich flavor.

Mushrooms

Any type of mushrooms can be used, however the best mushroom bisque is created by using a combination of several varieties of mushrooms. This adds layers of flavor and creates dimension in the finished soup.

Some mushrooms to consider for these recipes are:

  • Shitake
  • Crimini
  • Chanterelles
  • Portabella
  • Button
  • Morels

Liquids

Chicken stock is another important ingredient in bisque. It is important to get a good quality stock that is not too salty. Organic and free range stock is first choice because of the superior flavor. Homemade chicken stock can also be used.Heavy cream is added to contribute to the smooth, velvety consistency of the bisque. Don't be tempted to save grams of fat by using anything else. The result will not be as flavorful as when cream is used. There are differences in creams as well. Be sure to use heavy cream, rather than whipping cream. Heavy cream lists only cream and perhaps a stabilizer as ingredients. Whipping cream may be made from skim milk, stabilizers, oils, and other ingredients that you don't want.

Basic Mushroom Bisque Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 lbs mushrooms
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 leek, chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon Cognac
  • Truffle oil, optional

Instructions

  1. In a soup pot slowly cook the onions, mushrooms, and leeks in the butter until translucent. Be sure to stir often and do not let them brown.
  2. Add the flour and cook until tan.
  3. Add the chicken stock slowly, stirring constantly. Bring the soup to a boil.
  4. Reduce the heat and simmer the soup for one hour.
  5. Puree the soup in a blender in small batches. Return it to the pot and whisk in the cream, Cognac, and remaining butter.
  6. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Serve warm, drizzled with truffle oil, if desired.

Serves 6

Mushroom Bisque with Porcini

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 cup boiling water
  • 2 pounds mixed fresh mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground, pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Marsala
  • 1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 cup cream
  • 2 tablespoons Madeira
  • 4 tablespoons butter

Instructions

  1. Pour the boiling water over the dried mushrooms. Set aside.
  2. Wash, trim, and chop the fresh mushrooms.
  3. Heat the butter in a stockpot over medium heat. Add shallots, salt and pepper and rosemary.
  4. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until shallots begin to soften.
  5. Add celery and continue to cook until translucent.
  6. Add fresh mushrooms and season with salt and pepper.
  7. Cook, stirring frequently for about five minutes. Reduce the liquid by half.
  8. Drain the porcini mushrooms, reserving the soaking liquid.
  9. Add porcini to the pot. Increase the heat to medium high and cook for one minute.
  10. Pour the mushroom soaking liquid into the pot. Add the potatoes, Marsala, and chicken stock.
  11. Simmer until potatoes are very tender.
  12. Remove from heat and allow the soup to cool for ten minutes.
  13. Puree the soup in the blender in small batches.
  14. Return to pot, add cream, remaining butter, and thyme.
  15. Simmer, stirring for five minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  16. Remove from heat. Add Madeira and serve immediately.

Serves 6

Garnishes

Garnishes finish off the soup and give it a professional presentation. Mushroom bisque soup can be garnished with many different things. Consider some of the following:

  • Chopped green onions sprinkled on top
  • Float a large crouton sprinkled with grated Parmesan cheese in the soup
  • Crumbled, cooked bacon
  • Drizzle a little olive oil over the top
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Sliced mushrooms

Mushroom bisque soup makes an elegant first course or a delicious light lunch. Once the basic technique has been mastered there are numerous ways to vary the soup. Homemade mushroom bisque is an easy soup to master and a fantastic addition to your table.

Mushroom Bisque Soup