Smoked Gouda, peppered bacon and mushroom soup
Chris Desens, CEC, AAC
1 strip Peppered bacon, julienned
1 strip Peppered bacon, diced
3 Tbl. Butter, whole
¼ cup Yellow onions, diced
¼ cup Celery, diced
2 cups Mushrooms, cremini, shiitake and domestic, sliced
½ tsp Garlic, minced
¼ cup Flour
1/8 cup Madeira
1/8 cup Sherry
2 cups Chicken stock
1 cup Heavy cream
1 cup Smoked Gouda cheese, grated
1/8 tsp Thyme, fresh
1 Bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
1 slice white bread, crust removed, diced
1 tsp butter, clarified
Pinch of fresh thyme, picked
¼ cup Shitake mushrooms, stems removed, thinly sliced
1 tsp Mushroom soy
1 tsp Olive oil
Black pepper, to taste
Heat julienned bacon in pot and cook until crisp; remove, drain and reserve as garnish.
Add diced bacon and cook until nearly crisp. Add butter, onions, celery and mushrooms and cook until mushrooms release their liquid. Add garlic and continue to cook briefly. Add flour and stir to make a roux. Add Madeira and Sherry and stir well, then add chicken stock. In a separate pot, heat cream and cheese together until cheese melts. Puree in blender and fold into thickened soup base. Add herbs, bay leaf and season to taste. Cook until flour taste disappears. Remove bay leaf before serving.
For croutons-heat butter in skillet and add bread cubes and thyme. Toast over medium heat until golden brown and crisp. Reserve for soup.
For shiitake bacon-combine mushrooms with soy and olive oil, lay out on rack and bake in oven until crisp. Reserve for soup.
Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with croutons, crisp bacon and shiitake bacon.
Beverage Recommendation: Amantillado Sherry or 2005 Brandborg “Northern Reach” Pinot Noir
Chef’s Note: This soup works well for any occasion. It offers a nice variation on a classic favorite.