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Wild Mushroom Soup With Asiago Toasts

Yield 10

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium Vidalia onion, chopped
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 1 1/4 pounds mixed wild mushrooms, trimmed and thickly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons Cognac
  • 2 1/2 quarts chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
  • 10 thyme sprigs
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup freshly grated Asiago cheese (4 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese (2 ounces)
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 baguette, sliced 1/4 inch thick and toasted
  • 1/4 cup snipped chives

How to Make It

  1. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large, heavy saucepan. Add the white mushrooms and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, : about 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

  2. Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in the saucepan. Add the onion and shallots and cook over moderate heat until softened. Add the wild mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, : about 20 minutes. Add the Cognac and cook until evaporated. Stir in the stock, thyme sprigs, bay leaves and cooked white mushrooms and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to moderately low and cook for 45 minutes. Discard the thyme sprigs and bay leaves.

  3. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender until smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan, stir in the cream and season with salt and pepper.

  4. In a mini food processor, combine the Asiago, cream cheese and egg yolk and pulse until creamy. Spread the Asiago cream on the baguette toasts and arrange on a rimmed baking sheet.

  5. Preheat the broiler. Broil the toasts : 8 inches from the heat for about 2 minutes, or until golden and bubbling.

  6. Ladle the soup into shallow bowls and float the Asiago toasts on top. Garnish with the chives and serve.

  7. Make Ahead: The soup can be prepared through Step 3 and refrigerated for up to 2 days. The toasts and Asiago cream can also be made ahead, but spread the cream on the toasts and broil them shortly before serving.