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Creamy Paleo Mushroom Soup with Bacon

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Level: Easy

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Description

You’d never guess this creamy, flavorful mushroom soup wasn’t full of heavy cream! The bacon adds a nice touch. (Which is the case for most things.)

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Brown Mushrooms (cremini Are Also Fine)
  • 1 whole Large Yellow Onion
  • 1 head Garlic
  • 1 sprig (Large Sprig) Of Fresh Rosemary (or Sub 1/2 Teaspoon Dried For The Sprig)
  • 3 Tablespoons Heat-safe Oil, Like Avocado Or Coconut
  • 5 slices Thick Cut Bacon
  • 1-½ quart Beef Broth
  • 2 ounces, weight Dried Shiitake Mushrooms
  • 2 cups Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 3 Tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Coconut Aminos (see Note)
  • Kosher Salt And Black Pepper To Taste
  • 6 slices Grass-fed Cheddar Cheese, For Cheese Crisp Garnish (optional)

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 425 F.

Wipe off the tops of the mushrooms and discard the stems. Quarter the mushrooms and place them on a rimmed baking sheet. Peel the onion, slice it in half, then slice each half into 4-5 wedges. Place them on the baking sheet with the mushrooms. Separate the garlic bulb into cloves and peel them. (See note.) Place the cloves on the baking sheet. Remove the leaves from the rosemary sprig and place leaves on the baking sheet (discard the stem).

Drizzle the oil over the vegetable mixture, give it a generous sprinkling of salt and black pepper, and toss it around with your hands to coat everything. Spread them out evenly and roast for 20 minutes, stirring it around halfway through.

While the vegetables are roasting, cut the bacon into 1-inch pieces and cook in a large soup pot over medium heat until crisp to your liking. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add 1/2 cup of the beef broth to the skillet and stir it around to remove the browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Add the remaining broth and bring to a simmer. Add the dried mushrooms to the pot and cook for 2-3 minutes or until they puff up and soften. Add the roasted vegetables and the almond milk. Simmer for 15 minutes.

Blend the soup by using an immersion blender or working in batches with a blender. Return soup to the stove and add vinegar, aminos, and salt and pepper, to taste. Because I make my own broth and don’t salt it, I added about 2 1/2 teaspoons of Kosher salt. You don’t need that much if you’re using store-bought broth.

Serve with bacon bits and cheese crisps.

To make the cheese crisps, put a several thin slices of cheese in a skillet and cook over medium-high heat. They’ll melt, then get bubbly for a while and render off some of its fat, then you’ll be able to flip it like a pancake. Once it’s starting to become golden brown, remove it from the skillet, let it cool (and crisp up), then break it into pieces.

Notes:

1. Coconut aminos are simply a paleo alternative to soy sauce. You can use soy sauce or tamari which is a gluten- (wheat-) free soy sauce. I use it here to give the soup a deeper umami flavor. It doesn’t make it taste like stir-fry.

2. Dismantling a bulb of garlic is pretty easy if you know a coupe of tricks. Put the bulb on the cutting board root-side up and press down with the palm of your hand. It should simply fall apart. Next: peeling the cloves. If you’ve ever watched Food Network, they all do it the same way. Place the flat side of your knife on the clove and hit the knife with your other hand. The clove should be easy to remove from the peel. If not, hit it again.

3. I buy the big container of dried shiitake mushrooms at Costco and find it to be reasonably priced. You could probably use another type of mushroom, but I’m not well-versed in mushroom varieties to give you a recommendation.

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