Soup and Compost

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Today we went to the mushroom farm which is about 15 minutes drive from our place.  They sell mushroom compost for 60c per bag.  These are the bags of spent compost once they can no longer harvest commercial quantities of mushrooms.

We have a small garden bed which has had celery growing in it for over 12 months and I finally harvested the last of it and wanted to top the bed up with some compost before planting the garlic.

Since we have to make a trip in the ute to get the compost we generally buy a few bags at a time to make the trip worthwhile.  Today we bought 10 bags and have used 2 so far.

The other bags of compost are stacked and waiting to be added to the vegie gardens at a later date.

At the right time of the year and in the right conditions (cool and moist) you can sometimes get another flush of mushrooms as an added bonus.

While we were collecting the bags of compost I noticed mushrooms in some of the bags so I picked them and brought them home.

Here they are on the kitchen bench

They do not look quite as pretty as the perfect ones that we see in the shops but the large ones are so full of flavour and perfect for making mushroom soup.  It is definitely soup weather and it is great to have a variety of home-made soup to choose from in the freezer.

736g of usable mushrooms after peeling and trimming them.  That is not bad for an incidental acquisition while collecting the compost.

Here is the recipe


4 tablespoons butter

2 cups finely chopped onion

500g mushrooms, sliced

2 cups vegetable stock

1 tablespoon tamari (or soy sauce)

1 teaspoon paprika

3 tablespoon flour

1 cup milk

1 cup water

Black pepper

Sea salt

1 teaspoon lemon juice

Chopped parsley

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter, add onions and saute.  Add mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes.  Add vegetable stock, tamari and paprika.  Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes.

In another saucepan melt the remaining butter, add flour and cook for 2 minutes.  Gradually add the milk blending until smooth.  Add the water and stir until thickened.  Add sauce to the mushroom mixture.  Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice.  Sprinkle with chopped parsley to serve.

I find that this recipe freezes quite satisfactorily.

I made one and a half times the recipe with my mushrooms and have 7 large meal-sized serves from that.

If you have the opportunity to try this recipe I would love to hear what you think.

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