Saturday, October 10, 2009

Mushroom Madness

Today we piled into a van and with Clint as our driver headed out for a wonderful day to Chester County .. this was a culinary tour and our first stop was Phillips Mushrooms.
We arrived at Phillips as a light rain fell .. but that did not dampen our enthusiasm or our spirits.
Phillips Mushrooms is located in Kennett Square , the self proclaimed center of Mushrooms.
Phillips is the largest grower of speciality mushrooms in the US established in 1927 it is a 3rd generation family owned run business.
We had the extreme pleasure of having the head grower, Angel as our guide for this fascinating tour through the mushroom houses.
We saw Shiitake , Portabella, Maitaki, Oyster& Crimini , just to name a few.
This is a first class and very busy operation and taking care of this business is a 7 day a week job!
We put on our little caps and masks and we went into each building, learning what mushrooms need to survive and grow. It was a fascinating and informative tour! I think we will never look at mushrooms the same way again.
Below is a wonderful recipe for mushroom soup perfect for these cool autumn days ahead !


3 Tbs.olive oil
3 Tbs butter melted
1/2 lb portabella mushrooms chopped
1 lb of assorted mushrooms chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 leek chopped
2 shallot chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
salt ~ pepper
1 tsp dried thyme
1 ~ 40 oz cans chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream ( optional)

~in oil & butter saute onions, celery, garlic ,leeks, shallot until golden and soft add mushrooms and cook till brown and golden .. season with salt , pepper, thyme .. let cool & then puree 1/2 the mixture while adding chicken broth to processor to help mix well .. return to pot and add cream .. simmer until warmed through.

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