Creamy mushroom soup – perfect for the wintertime.
I’m not a huge fan of mushrooms but there’s something about mushroom soup that seems to captivate me each and everytime. Growing up in a Caribbean household mushrooms weren’t something we embraced at all.
I do remember having brief discussions about mushrooms with my grandmother to which I recall her referring to it as “Junju”. I have never seen the spelling for this colloquial term before but that is how I would spell it based on the pronunciation of the word.
While the name junju was a local dialect for mushrooms, this wasn’t something to brag about. There was a stigma attached to anything that was associated with fungus. Even now as a adult I have to be mindful of mentioning “junju” to my grandmother. In short, there was simply a cultural misunderstanding of what mushrooms are and their health properties. However trying to convey this to someone who grow up perceiving this as a negative food source was very difficult.
Being a Caribbean food blogger with such enthusiasm towards cooking all things healthy with an element of diversity, I literally took the opportunity to explore mushrooms in-spite of it’s negative cultural connotation. Mushrooms are a great source of vitamin D something that is procured in large doses from sunlight. Vitamin D is fortified by the skin, it goes through several chemical changes before turned into a hormone.
We need vitamin D to help keep bones strong and healthy, not only for the skeletal system but also to absorb other minerals such as phosphorus and calcium these minerals play a crucial role in bone development.
While the best source of vitamin D is derived from a moderate source of sunlight, living in colder climates or countries where seasonal changes result in cold weather can present as a problem to obtain a healthy dose of vitamin D.
Taking supplements such as cod liver oil or vitamin D3 are great alternatives, but if you’re like me, you’ll probably be curious to know what the best source of vitamin D is available in the form of food. Well…….drum roll………introducing mushrooms. Mushrooms are by far one of the best ways to eat your way to good bone health throughout the winter.
Black/Asian people are more likely to suffer from low levels of vitamin D during the wintertime, so this is crucial to ensure levels stay constant during the cold snap. A deficiency in vitamin D may lead to weakening of the bones i.e osteoporosis, brittle bones.
While you might not go crazy for mushroom soup, the health properties should be convincing enough to try it at least once. Don’t be fooled by the dark hue (I used a large quantity chestnut mushrooms). The coconut milk gives a lovely creamy almost velvet type texture that’s so heavenly.
- 1lb of chestnut mushrooms (or any other mushroom, washed)
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped.
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 tsp of thyme
- 1 tsp of black pepper
- 2 cups of vegetable stock (see post)
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- 2 tbsp of coconut oil
- Himalayan pink salt to taste
- Melt the coconut oil over medium heat in a saucepan and sautee the garlic and onions until transparent.
- Incorporate the mushrooms with the garlic and onions, stir gently and cook the mushrooms for 1-2 minutes. The mushrooms will begin to shrink as they start to cook during the given time.
- Season with thyme, black pepper and pink salt to taste.
- Pour in the vegetable stock and stir the entire contents, then finally pour in the coconut milk.
- Bring the soup mixture to the boil then reduce and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Puree the soup (in batches if necessary) in a blender until smooth.
- Return the ready made soup to the pot if additional warmth is required.
- Serve accordingly with optional gluten free bread or alone.