For the past week, I've been contemplating how to reinvent French Onion Soup. At first, I thought making it vegan was probably enough, but no, there was something more exciting than that. Wild mushrooms! They make this already tasty soup, an even better soup.
In the US, the Pacific Northwest is loaded with wild mushrooms of all kinds. We get enough rain and have enough cloud cover to make it inevitable. While you are welcome to use whatever wild mushrooms you would like for this soup, I relied on dried mushrooms that are well-known in the area. Porcini, black trumpet, morels, lobster, and chanterelles. They are found in the forests all over Western North America, and are positively divine in this soup.
Enjoy this soup with a hearty slice of bread, or maybe a bit of vegan swiss cheese melted on top.
French Onion Wild Mushroom Soup
1 ounce mixed dried mushrooms (porcini, black trumpet, morels, lobster, chanterelles), rinsed
2 large onions, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp vegan butter
3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
¼ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup dry white wine
¼ cup reduced-sodium tamari
1 tsp thyme
2 bay leaves
Black pepper, to taste
1 cup broth (vegetable, fake beef, fake chicken, etc)
1. Pour 2 cups boiling water over wild mushrooms. Cover with a plate or lid, and set aside, while you work on the rest of the soup.
2. Melt vegan butter in a large heavy pot or dutch oven. Add onions and a dash of salt, and cook over HIGH stirring constantly for ~3 minutes. Once sizzling, turn down to medium-low and sauté until transparent (about 10 minutes). Add thyme and bay leaves, and sauté 2 more minutes.
3. Add flour to onions. Stir until everything is coated. Saute for 2 minutes, and then, stir in wine and soy sauce. Add wild mushrooms and the mushroom soaking liquid. Add broth. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Serve with a hearty loaf of bread.