I've never been a fan of mushrooms. In fact, I only started eating them after I read Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma. He has a section on mushrooms and how they're so good for you. And when I say I started eating them, I mean I stopped picking them out of my food at restaurants. I've bought them a few times at the farmer's market, but they always go bad by the time I get around to making something with them. (Seriously! Why do mushrooms go bad so quickly?)
Which is exactly what happened with this soup. I looked over the recipe and bought the ingredients, i.e. the mushrooms, and then they went bad. Normally when vegetables start to go bad, I chop them up and eat them anyway, but I don't want to chance it with vegetables. So I just used what was left over in my pantry, and it turned out amazingly! Seriously, this soup is fantastic. Since then, I've made it with mushrooms, and I have to say, I almost prefer it without. So it's your call!
10 oz mushrooms, finely chopped and/or diced (optional, I used baby portabella mushrooms)
2 red peppers, chopped
3 cloves of garlic
1 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
4 cups of water
1 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup milk
dash of nutmeg
Heat olive oil in a pan. Add onions, garlic, and peppers, and saute until golden brown on medium heat.
Add mushrooms, thyme, bay leaf, black pepper, and Worcestershire sauce. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until water from mushroom disappears.
Add water. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat. Simmer for half an hour.
Add cornstarch to thicken. Season with salt and nutmeg.
Add milk and heavy cream and turn the heat off. Do NOT let the soup boil once you add the milk and cream.
Serve and enjoy! If you like, add some bread and cheese.