Based largely off of ib‘s favorite mushroom barley soup (Please to the Table, p. 86), we made a lovely winter meal. The leftover ham bone (and some ham left on it) from our greenmarket ham for jambalaya added a nicely complementary base to this hearty soup.
The mushroom soup was started by ib rehydrating 1 oz dry chanterelle mushrooms for a couple hours. We chopped 1 and a half small onions and about a pound of white mushroom and sauteed them in 2 tbsp butter. We sliced the remaining ham off of the bone and added it to the softened onion and mushroom mixture and then added about 6 tbsp barley, the chantrelles, 8 total cups of water (most of it was the water used to soak the mushrooms), and the ham bone.
This simmered for 45 minutes, until we could start to taste the ham flavor in the broth. Then we added a couple carrots, potatoes, and celery stalks, cubed small. The recipe called for a bouquet garni but we didn’t have any here so we just added two bay leaves. This simmered another 20 minutes, letting it cook uncovered at the end to thicken slightly. We added some grated white cheddar and gruyere cheese as well as a bit of heavy cream and let cook just until the flavors blended together. With the ham, the soup didn’t need much salt, but we added a bit of black and white pepper. Topped with sour cream and dill, this soup was really divine.