And Soup Week continues! It also ends with this delicious creamy mushroom rice soup. I guess since I only post 2-3 recipes each week, theme weeks are not very epic around here, huh? Theme months would be way too much I think, but maybe I’ll start doing theme fortnights in the future. (Yes, I said fortnight. I’m fancy like that.)
Having grown up in the midwest, I can tell you this: Midwesterners like their food creamy. We love cheesy casseroles, anything made with canned soup, and all kinds of concoctions made with sour cream, mayo, and/or cheese sauce (usually and, not or). Being sick last week, I was craving comfort food and to me, comfort food is creamy food. So I set out to make a vegetarian version of the classic Creamy Wild Rice & Chicken Soup. And then, because it’s the New Year and I’m trying to watch what I eat, I set out to make a lighter version. Behold, Creamy Wild Mushroom Rice Soup.
The biggest obstacle was figuring out what to replace the chicken with. I’m always hesitant to cook with seitan on my blog because I don’t know if that’s readily available everywhere. And tofu in a creamy soup? That seemed kind of icky. So I went with adding extra mushrooms. I know, a lot of you hate mushrooms. You can use something else in your soup then!
I adapted my Creamy Wild Mushroom Rice Soup from this Cream of Turkey & Wild Rice soup from Eating Well. Instead of adding heavy cream or half-and-half, they used sour cream to thicken the broth. I love this method of making creamy soups–it adds creaminess without a lot of fat or calories. It also adds a little tanginess. My husband was on the fence about this, but I really like it. So be warned–if you’re ambivalent about sour cream, you might want to stick with adding whole milk, half-and-half, or heavy cream instead.
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This Creamy Wild Mushroom Rice Soup was exactly what I needed when I was feeling sick. It reminded me of home, of chilly winters, of snow soaking through my boots and numb toes–okay, maybe I don’t miss everything about the Midwest. But it did remind me of the food I grew up on. Total comfort food.
If you’d like to use non-instant wild rice, cook 1 cup according to the package instructions and stir it into the soup at the end of cooking time.
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