Saturday, December 15, 2007

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Holidays mean tradition, especially when you have children. In our house, we had a set menu on Thanksgiving and Christmas. They both included soup, French Onion Soup for Christmas and Cream of Mushroom Soup for Thanksgiving. Both of these are rather strange choices. I normally cook a traditional English Christmas dinner of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding with a plum pudding for dessert. Unless you go back as far as the Norman Conquest, adding a French dish is a bit odd. I just like the taste of onions with my beef.

Some adults and most children do not care for mushrooms. My daughter is an exception. She loves them. So much in fact, that I was able to overcome some of her pickiness about food by adding mushrooms to anything new that I cooked. Only then would she consent to try them. Mushroom soup was one of her favorites along with the traditional pumpkin pie that I have made every year for decades.

Like the onion soup, this recipe is straight from my Betty Crocker’s International Cookbook published in 1980. No changes have been made.

Here’s a meal planning tip I’ve discovered. If you are making mashed potatoes, put your potatoes on to boil and then make this soup. When the soup is finished, your potatoes will also be finished. The soup can then be put on the back of the stove to keep warm while you mash the potatoes.

Verdict: Yum! This one’s a keeper!

Cream of Mushroom Soup
(source: Betty Crocker’s International Cookbook)

8 ounces mushrooms
4 tablespoons margarine or butter
1 medium onion, chopped
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
1 can (10 ¾ ounces) condensed chicken broth
1 soup can water
1 cup light cream
Snipped parsley

Slice enough mushrooms to measure 1 cup; chop remaining mushrooms. Cook and stir sliced mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of the margarine in 3-quart saucepan over low heat until golden brown. Remove mushrooms with slotted spoon.

Cook and stir chopped mushrooms and onion in remaining margarine until onion is tender; stir in flour, salt and white pepper. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, about 1 minute; remove from heat. Stir in chicken broth and water. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly; boil and stir 1 minute. Stir in light cream and sliced mushrooms. Garnish each serving with parsley.

Donate: Campbell’s soup labels to your local school

Recycle: soup can

Compost: onion skins, parsley stems

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