We mushroom hunt for Birch Boletes and preserve them by pickling, drying and freezing (post boiling). In my opinion, nothing beats a bowl of rich mushroom stew on a cold, crisp day. I am sure you can use other mushrooms in this recipe (any of the Boletus family for sure) but I have never done so.
Fair warning, this is not a paleo friendly soup–lots of delicious carbs
Dry birch boletes, handful plus or minus
Carrots (1-2, depending on size)
3 medium potatoes
1/2-1 cups of barley, depends on thick you want your stew to be.
Broth of your choice (2 quarts-depends on the amount of soup desired)
Cilantro (fresh or dry) optional
Salt and pepper to taste
I start the soup by taking a handful of mushrooms and pouring boiling water over them, pouring off the boiling water after a few minutes (this should rid your mushrooms of whatever got stuck to them–we don’t wash the mushrooms prior to drying, so if a piece of grass dried on the mushroom, this should get rid of it). Pour a second round of hot boiling water on the mushrooms and let them steep for an hour or so. This time, you will use the water as it will be chock full of mushroom flavor. Peel potatoes and cube. Peel the carrots and grate. Bring the broth to boil. Put in the potatoes, barley and carrots. Chop the mushrooms and put into broth, with the water. Add salt and pepper to taste along with the finely chopped cilantro. Turn the heat down and let it simmer for an hour or so. The barley has natural starch and will thicken the soup. If you like, you can add some sausage (cooked and chopped) to the soup to make it more hearty and add protein.
Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and enjoy! This is a cold weather soup–it warms you right up, perfect for our rainy Pacific Northwest fall days.
Thanks for reading! Please share your recipes using mushrooms, especially for soup.