Mushroom Bread Soup, rustic, homey, total Italian comfort food. Hosting bold rich Porcini mushroom flavor, a deep flavorful broth, and that wonderful sopping soup wet sourdough. As a result this dish screams utter deliciousness!
Song of the day: "You Make Lovin Fun" by Fleetwood Mac.
Mushroom Bread Soup, from Jamie Oliver's cookbook "Jamie Cooks Italy"! Winter still has us in its grasp and the chills have us begging to come home to a soup dinner. Warm, chunky, and so rich in flavor and texture, however you gotta love those plump waiting to explode mushrooms! The aroma alone of this soup will have you at the table with a spoon in hand ready to eat!
Bringing me back home as a child..........
When I saw this recipe in Jamie's book, I immediately was brought back to my childhood. My mom and dad used to make a lot of different soups! However, they also put stale bread inside.
My dad said that they didn't have a lot of money and wasting bread would have been a mortal sin, so they used it up in soups and vegetable stews. He said that it sure filled him up after a good hard day's work and the way the bread soaked up all the flavors of the broth made it so scrumptious.
I have to agree I remember fishing through my bowl looking for and eating all the bread before finishing the soup down to the last spoonful. My dad was right again, I did feel satisfied and full. A great way to stretch the budget and make a dish substantial!
The main mushroom flavor of this soup comes from the Porcini. Not fresh, because those you can only find in the fall. The ones I used came from Mona foods, a vendor at The Old Strathcona Farmers Market located in Old Strathcona, a beautiful character area of our fair city.
Because they are dry you have to re-hydrate them, so into some hot boiling water they go. They will soften and plump up while you are making the base of the soup. I also used some fresh button top and mixed mushrooms to add a bit of interest in texture.
Time to start cooking!
So all the ingredients are gathered up:
- Porcini soaking in boiling water
- Button top and mixed mushrooms cleaned, washed, and dried
- Purple and yellow onion finely chopped
- Minced garlic
- Dried red chilies
- Washed baby spinach
- Day old sourdough bread
- Vegetable stock
- Olive oil
I have to tell you I did this in a wok, and it worked out perfectly, easy to stir, and big enough to hold the soup till the end!
The best part!
I love the aroma of the garlic and onion sauteing, slowly softening. It is going to infuse some wonderful flavor into the soup mix. You can season with a bit of salt and pepper now. Not too much, we will taste it after and can adjust then. We are going to elevate this soup with some paprika and oregano. Jamie's recipe called for fresh oregano, which I did not have, so I opted for dried and I think it is going to be just perfect. Now all we need to do is add the butter, cut up the mushrooms, and wash the baby spinach, spin and in it goes.
Time for the Porcini!
Now that everything is almost in, we have to get those plump Porcini into the soup along with the water they soaked in because it will really bring in the distinct flavor of this mushroom. The only thing is try not to get the gritty water in the bottom of the bowl into the soup. Just a little time and we are almost done. Finally in goes the vegetable stock.
The soup has been boiling for quite a few minutes. It is time to add the bread, some olive oil, and it is ready to serve. Make sure the bread is broken into bite-size pieces so it is pleasurable to eat. When the bread is nice and all soaked up, it is ready to serve.
Remember to taste for seasoning. It is easier to add more salt and pepper if needed than to try to subdue.
What an aroma!
I can smell the sweetness of the onions, and that wonderful garlic backdrop. In comes that pungent earthy richness of the Porcini and the other mushrooms, perfect with the aroma of the oregano. This Mushroom Bread Soup is truly amazing!
Time for a taste!
The texture of that bread comes through so juicy and moist and starchy, full of that distinct Porcini mushroom flavor. The wilted spinach is a welcome treat as it lingers with the plumpness of the Porcini and the sweetness of the caramelized onion and garlic truly superb, a perfect match to the boldness of the broth and the earthiness of the mushroom. I love how the oregano creeps in to elevate the flavor profile in a most beautiful and subtle way.
This soup is definitely a symphony of flavor and texture, one that will leave you feeling comfortable, warmed and satisfied in a most noteworthy way.
I think this day and age we are looking for incredible food that can fit our budget and feed our families. This Mushroom Bread Soup will firstly stretch your dollar that much farther, secondly doing it without sacrificing the taste or quality! Lastly, it just tastes too damn good!
Gather the family, huddle in close around the table, revel in the aromas of this soup with gratitude for the one who lovingly prepared it, and most of all dive in and enjoy!
Thanks, Jamie, for your passion and enthusiasm, you really inspire me to be a great cook!
Song of the day: "You Make Lovin Fun" by Fleetwood Mac.Print
- ¾ oz dried Porcini mushrooms
- 1 cup button top mushrooms, chopped
- 1 each yellow onion and purple onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- ½ teaspoon red chili flakes
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Pinch of paprika
- 1 ¼ cups mixed mushrooms
- 3 ½ cups spinach or any green you may have such as arugula or kale
- 10 oz stale sourdough bread
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- Pecorino or Parmigiano cheese, for serving (optional)
- Place dried porcini mushrooms with 5 cups boiling water. Cover with a plate on top and set aside.
- In a large wok or soup pot, drizzle in e.v.o. oil, enough to cover the bottom of the pan or pot. Toss in onions and garlic and cook till softened. Season with salt, pepper and paprika. Cook on medium to high heat for 5 minutes.
- Add in the butter and chili flakes and stir.
- Toss in dried oregano and stir once again making sure to distribute that oregano throughout.
- Cut up button top and other mushrooms in nice small edible pieces and toss into pan with onions. Saute' for another 5 minutes.
- At this point, add in fresh baby spinach, or whatever green you are using, and stir, followed by the rehydrated porcini and the water. Leave the last gritty bit of liquid in the bowl. Do not pt into the soup. Also add he vegetable stock at this point.
- Bring soup to a boil and let it bubble away for 15 minutes.
- Tear the bread into bite-size pieces and stir into the pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. As soon as the bread soaks up the liquid, it is ready to serve.
- Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and some grated Pecorino or Parmigiano (optional).
- Ready to serve.
- If you can't find the Porcini mushrooms use what you have or can get.
- You can use any bread just as long as it is rustic and crusty.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Category: Soup, Vegetarian
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keywords: soup, sourdough bread, baby spinach, onions, garlic, oregano, porcini mushrooms, button top mushrooms, e.v.o. oil, garlic, Italian
When I am not cooking, I enjoy playing musical instruments, singing, writing. I have learned over the years to live in gratitude and enjoy the moment.