Hungarian Mushroom Soup

The first time I had this soup was several years ago at Teaberry’s, my favorite tearoom, located in Flemington, NJ. When I was undergoing chemotherapy, I found that I craved mushrooms, but could not visit my “happy place” because I was immunocompromised. Then I found this recipe in my copy of the Moosewood Cookbook. (Heaven holds a special place for author Mollie Katzen.) When chemo decimated my taste buds, this soup shone through the resulting fog so effectively that it made we weep. My recovering-picky eater daughter loved it with a few tweaks. Hallelujah! -E

Credit: 1997, Mollie Katzen, Moosewood Cookbook, TenSpeed Press. p 14. I’ve added edits for clarity and note very small adjustments that I have made to her recipe.

Hungarian Mushroom Soup

12 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 cups chopped onion
4 T. butter (divided)
3 T. flour
1 cup milk
1 – 2 t. dried dill weed (divided)
1 T. Hungarian paprika
1 T. Tamari
1 t. salt
2 cups stock or water (divided)
2 t. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup sour cream
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley

1. Saute the onions in 2 tablespoons of the butter. Salt lightly. A few minutes later, add the mushrooms, 1 tsp. dill, 1/2 cup stock or water, Tamari and paprika. Cover and simmer 15 minutes.
2. Melt remaining butter in large saucepan. Whisk in flour, and cook, whisking, a few minutes. Add milk. Cook, stirring frequently, over low heat about 10 minutes until thick.
3. Stir in mushroom mixture and remaining stock. Cover and simmer 10-15 minutes.
4. Just before serving, add salt pepper, lemon juice, sour cream and if desired, extra dill. Serve garnished with parsley.

Yield: 1 quart.
I use a sweet smoked paprika made by Mas Portell. A product from Spain, this paprika will give the soup a smoky aura. Use a scant tablespoon for this recipe.
Tamari is a super concentrated soy sauce. I find that it can be found in most supermarkets. If you cannot locate it, use a nice Kikkoman soy sauce instead.
I use beef broth, but a nice vegetable stock can be substituted.
This soup is so tasty that even people who loathe mushrooms might like it. Try whizzing the soup in a blender and make it a bisque.
If you want to make ahead, make the recipe up to step 4. I have had success freezing the soup at this stage. Reheat the soup and add all the step 4 ingredients just prior to serving.

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