No Thyme Like The Present
It has been raining in London for a month and a half straight. I’m not even kidding. They claim to be building the Olympic Stadium just over from my house in East London, but I’m convinced it’s actually an ark and I plan to be first in line when the truth comes out that this whole city is going down by the head and that we’re all going to die.
In the meantime, though, we all need something good and hearty to warm us from the inside out in this chilly, miserable weather. Enter my Mushroom & Tri-Onion Soup!
This soup is thick, flavourful, and filled with thyme, which is my current culinary obsession. Thyme is fragrant and delicious and reminds me of cooking in the French countryside. I WANT IT IN EVERYTHING.
This is a fairly forgiving recipe and you can play with measurements to get a consistency and flavour you like. The first time I made this I was deathly ill and the second time I was uproariously drunk, so forgive me if it doesn’t work out for you. It should though.
Mushroom & Tri-Onion Soup
- 1/2 cup vegan margarine
- 6 gloves of garlic, minced
- 1 yellow onion
- 1 bunch green onions (or spring onions, to you Brits)
- 1 shallot
- 640g or about 25 medium-sized brown mushrooms (chestnuts or creminis)
- Any other mushrooms you have kicking around (handful of shiitakes? A portobello? Use ‘em!)
- 2 tbsp dried thyme
- 3 cups vegetable broth
Prep your veggies! This is a puréed soup, so nothing needs to be chopped too finely. That said, you also don’t want to attack a quarter of an onion with your immersion blender, so use your head here.
MUSHROOMS! These are what give your soup’s flavour its depth, so use brown mushrooms. Add whatever kind you like. I found some dodgy shiitakes at the back of my fridge that I decided to throw into the mix and had fully expected for them to kill me. I’m sitting here typing this, so I obviously came through it okay.
Use stems and all.
I used to hate onions so much. I hated chopping them. I hated the smell of them on my hands and coming out of my pores after I ate them. I would allow them to be hidden in my food but didn’t like putting them there myself. Since becoming vegan I am so obsessed with the layered little bastards that the International Onion Council has issued me three written warnings and are in the process of having a restraining order put in place against me.
Shallots are my new focus. I put them in and on everything. Cooked? Raw? LIKE AN APPLE?! I just want them all the time.
Use the whites of your green onions, primarily. If the greens are nice and not as withered as Dumbledore’s dead hand in Book 6, then chop them up and use them too. More flavour for the…pushin’!
If you prefer other onions, you can use them instead. Whatever it takes to punch up the flavour.
In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the margarine.
Add the garlic and onions and cook for 4-5 minutes or until softened. Add the mushrooms.
And add 2 tbsp of dried thyme. If you’re fancy and have access to fresh thyme, use that instead! Just use the proper equivalent. For this poor girl it’s Tesco dried thyme all the way.
Cook for 2-3 minutes over high heat.
Add your vegetable broth and cook on high heat for 5 minutes. I used chicken-flavoured vegan veggie broth. Regular veg broth tastes fine too.
Now for the fun part! Time to purée your soup into submission. You can either take the safe route and pour the whole kit and caboodle into a food processor to purée it smooth…OR you can attack it with an immersion blender!
I used an immersion blender whilst positively hammered. We’ll just say that my sweater and the kitchen walls enjoyed about as much soup as my belly did that night.
Purée until smooth. If you would like a thinner consistency feel free to add some more broth or water…or go crazy and splash in some soy or almond milk! Totally up to you. Soup freedom!
Serve hot…and perhaps with a crusty French bread? Delicious!
Stay warm and dry out there, y’all. If we’re lucky we may see the sun once or twice more before this British summer is gone.