Creamy Wild Mushroom Soup

October 21, 2009.   2 Comments.   Categories Comfort Food, Fabulous Side Dishes, Restaurant Recipes, Soups, Thanksgiving Dinner.  

Creamy Wild Mushroom Soup
Recipe and photos by

The Albion River Inn
Mendocino Coast, California

corner table Sean.jpg

That is the view from my favorite table at the Albion River Inn on the spectacular coast of Mendocino.  Need I say more?  I‘ll give you a moment to enjoy the view . . .

Whenever I return home to Mendocino, I have some rituals that I simply must do.  .  .

  1. Must drink Navarro and Golden Eye wines. 
  2. Must eat fresh sourdough bread. 
  3. Must have seafood chowder in town. 

And, all of those items are just for lunch :-)  

And… Must have dinner at The Albion River Inn.  Those are some of my homecoming “must do’s.”

The Albion is located right on the ocean and is both a wonderful inn with seaside rooms as well as an outstanding restaurant.  I will say aside from the award-winning culinary delights, I have a sentimental attachment to the Inn as it’s owned by a family of a very close friend of mine.  And most of my high school friends worked there at some point.  One of them, Chef Stephen Smith, is now the Executive Chef and has developed incredible menus for the Albion.

I have a few favorite dishes that are also on that “Must do” list.  This soup is one of them.  In fact, any soup they make is wonderful.  If you ever are fortunate enough to visit the Mendocino Coast – please add the Albion River Inn to your “must do’s” and I promise you’ll thank me for the recommendation!

Creamy Wild Mushroom Soup – The Recipe

Yield:  1/2 Gallon

  • 3
    oz. olive oil
  • 1
    small yellow onion, diced
  • 1
    leek, cleaned & diced
  • 1
    fresh fennel bulb, diced
  • 1
    carrot, peeled & diced
  • 3
    oz. Shiitake mushrooms, quartered
  • 1
    handful (3 oz.) dried Porcini mushrooms soaked in a little hot water
  • 1/2 
    cup sweet sherry wine
  • 2 whole bulbs roasted garlic,
  • 5 cups chicken stock or water
  • 2 tbsp. white truffle oil
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • 4 oz. half & half
  • Salt & pepper to taste


Roasted Garlic Bulbs: Cut tops off garlic bulbs so cloves are exposed, place in oven proof
dish and drizzle with olive oil. Roast at 400 ° for 20-25 minutes or until
light brown & tender.  Set
aside until cool enough to handle then remove cloves from skins by squeezing or


Step 1:  Squeeze
most the liquid out of the Porcini Mushrooms. Set aside and strain the liquid
and reserve.


Step 2:  In
a thick-bottomed soup pot heat olive oil until hot. Add the onion, leek,
fennel, carrot, and Shiitake & Porcini mushrooms. Stir, reduce heat to
medium-low, cover and “sweat” for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.


Step 3:  Uncover
and add sherry wine and peeled roasted garlic cloves. Increase heat to
medium-high. Cook uncovered until almost dry, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add stock
or water, reserved Porcini mushroom liquid, white truffle oil, and half &
half, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes.


Step 4:  When
all ingredients are tender, add the basil. Purée with a hand-held blender until
smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. If using a food processor, or blender,
add small amounts of soup, cover food processor or blender top with a thick
towel, and pulse several times before turning on high so hot soup won’t splash


this savory and full flavored soup garnished with croutons & chopped
parsley or basil, soup hot crusty bread and a fresh green salad.    




  1. This sounds DIVINE. I am definitely making it. Bookmark!

  2. Laura! This is a magnificent soup. Those dried porcini mushrooms give the soup incredible depth – I just adore them and use them a whole lot for stocks.
    The only reservation I would have about the recipe is adding the truffle oil at the beginning of the cooking – it is a very delicate oil and it looses its flavor very quickly once warned up. I think it might be more potent if added just before serving or even as a drizzle.
    That said, the soup is superb! Now you make me want to get on a plane and head for Mendocino!
    Ahhhh… Life is good!

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