We all know that homemade is fresher and more nutritious than processed, and that’s definitely true for canned “cream of …” soups. The other day I came across a recipe for cream of mushroom soup made in the Crockpot, and stored in the freezer, from A Year of Slow Cooking. This is right up my alley – and I’ll recommend this blog at my next Freezer Cooking class in April.
So yesterday I got the baby down for a nap, and headed to the kitchen. It just takes a few minutes to wipe off two pounds of mushrooms – looks like alot, huh? They filled up the Crockpot, too, after being cut into quarters. Throw in the spices and squeeze in the lemon juice, then add the broth and water, and walk away for eight hours. Can’t get too much easier, I think.
Here’s the recipe as it’s printed on the original blog, with my comments following:
Cream of Mushroom Soup (Crockpot)
“This recipe is for a LARGE Crockpot. Don't attempt these proportions in anything smaller than a 5qt.
--2 cups water
--2 cans (4 cups) vegetable broth
--1 qt of milk (to add later)
--juice of 1 lemon
--1/2 t salt
--1/2 t pepper
--1 T dried minced onion
--2 T Italian seasoning
Wash your mushrooms well and cut them into fourths. Put into your stoneware and add the spices and lemon juice. Pour in the vegetable broth and water. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.
CAREFULLY use an immersion hand blender and blend until soupy. If you don't have an immersion hand blender, very, very carefully blend in batches in a regular blender.
Let cool on the counter for quite a few hours, then pour into freezer bags to store or plastic containers. I used 2 cups per bag--which is 16 fluid ounces. A can of cream-of-soup is 10 ounces.”
This smelled amazing while it was cooking! After I blended the mushrooms, the crock went into the frig overnight. This morning I added what was left of a pint of fat-free half & half and a little bit of heavy cream, then added skim milk to make the 4 cups. It’s bagged and in the freezer, and I think will add so much flavor to any recipe that calls for canned cream of mushroom soup. Yes, it’s runnier than the canned stuff, but could easily be thickened if desired.
I’m going to leave it in the freezer until next week, then will use it in a recipe. If it’s awesome, like I suspect, I’m going to make another batch just so I have plenty on hand.