Wild mushroom soup (gf/vg)

This is our recipe for wild mushroom soup and is very tasty, if we say so ourselves. It has proved very popular on our foraging courses. You can use any mix of dried wild fungi but our favourites are ceps, cauliflower fungus and bay boletes.
  • 1 large leek (finely chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 clove of garlic (crushed)
  • 250g chestnut mushrooms or fresh wild fungi (cleaned and chopped)
  • 30g dried mixed wild mushrooms (dried mushrooms have a more intense flavour)
  • 1 litre vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • double cream (optional)
1. Put the dried mushrooms into a bowl and cover with recently boiled water to help  them rehydrate - leave for around 20 mins before you add to the saucepan.
2. Melt the butter in a very large saucepan and then add the chopped leeks.  Cook on a medium heat with the lid on until the leeks are soft and translucent.
3. Add the crushed garlic and fresh mushrooms to the saucepan, cook on a medium heat with the lid on for around 5 minutes.
4. Add the rehydrated wild mushrooms plus most of the water in which they were  soaking - leave the last bit as this can sometimes be gritty. Also add the stock and dried thyme, and bring up to a simmer with the lid on.
5. Simmer for around 15 mins or until the fresh mushrooms are cooked through. Turn off the heat.
6. Cool for a while before blending with a stick blender or jug blender.  Season with  salt and pepper to taste and add a little double cream if you like the flavour.  Reheat for a few minutes if the soup has gone a little cold.
7. Serve in a bowl or pour into a flask to take out on your foray.