Wild Mushroom Soup
I didn't collect enough shaggy ink cap mushrooms to make a whole batch of soup, so I stretched them with some shop-bought mushrooms. This recipe works well with bog-standard shop mushrooms, shop-bought exotic mushrooms, or wild mushrooms. But you do need plenty of them. Fry a finely chopped onion and one or two crushed garlic cloves in a little olive oil. Add plenty of chopped mushrooms. They shrink down a lot as they cook, so add more than you think you need. When they mushrooms have darkened and shrunk, cover with milk. Add a bay leaf and simmer for a while. Keep your eye on the pan so the milk doesn't boil over. I left it to simmer very gently whilst I made some soda bread.
When you are almost ready to serve the soup, liquidise about half of it and add the pureed soup back to the chunky soup. I don't like totally smooth mushroom soup, but it's a bit watery just as it is. This step thickens the soup without adding anything gloopy like cornflour. Now taste the soup and add a little sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add a good slug of cream (or creme fraiche etc.) If you have any Madeira or port knocking about, a slosh of that wouldn't do any harm either. A garnish of finely chopped chives finishes the job. Serve with your soda bread which should be ready about now.