Crawfish & Shrimp Étouffée
Spicy Chicken Pho

Caramelized Onion & Shiitake Bisque

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I recently had a run in with a mean little case of the winter crud. It kicked me out of commission for a bit, but I let my body fight the bug battle while I drifted in and out of snoozeland. During this wild rollercoaster ride between feverish sleep and reality, I dreamed of eating wonderful soup made with rich shiitake mushrooms in a velvety bisque of caramelized onions. So naturally, when I regained enough strength to get back into my kitchen, I made a big batch of bisque!

 I absolutely love shiitake mushrooms and they are known to have many health benefits, such as immune system support, while onions are a natural anti-inflammatory. The perfect combination for a recovering victim of the winter crud, but also scrumptious at any time and in any fashion. 

Caramelized Onion & Shiitake Mushroom Bisque

  • 2 medium yellow onions (diced)
  • 3 cups shiitake mushrooms (stems removed, sliced)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic (minced)
  • 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 cups vegetable stock 
  • 8oz heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • Sprinkle of cayanne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt

The most time consuming part of this dish is caramelizing the onions. If you get these going first, you can prep the other ingredients while they are cooking. Heat a dutch oven on medium low and throw in the olive oil and sliced onions. Stir to coat onions in the oil, then stir every 5 minutes or so until you get closer to the end of the caramelization process. 

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Remove stems from mushrooms and slice tops, remove thyme leaves from stems, and mince garlic. Set aside. 

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Your onions will take about 45 minutes (give or take) to caramelize. You can let them get darker than I did here. At this point, stir in minced garlic and let cook for another minute. 

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Pour a splash of the veggie stock in to deglaze the bottom of the pot, then add the rest of the stock. Turn heat up and bring to a boil. Turn down and let simmer for 10 minutes on medium. 

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Remove from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Use either a handheld immersion blender or a regular one to blend onion mixture. Set aside. 

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Reheat dutch oven and melt the butter. Add mushrooms, salt, cayanne, and black pepper. Sauté for 3 minutes. Add white wine and thyme and continue to simmer on medium for about 5-8 more minutes. 

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Add onion mixture and bring to a boil. 

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Reduce heat to medium low, add cream, and let simmer until it reaches the nice creamy texture of a bisque. 
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Garnish with croutons and fresh thyme, if desired. Enjoy! 
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