Recipe: Prego’s Forest Mushroom Soup

From time to time, we share recipes from the kitchens and galleys of the resorts & ships we proudly represent. Today, we feature a dish that is the most-requested recipe onboard Crystal Cruises. Enjoy!

By far the most requested recipe from Crystal’s onboard menus, the Forest Mushroom Soup served in Prego aboard Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity is a rich, earthy and savory treat – the perfect complement to virtually all other menu favorites like beef carpaccio and handmade ravioli. Thanks to its popularity, this ocean favorite is now served fleetwide. Presented in herbed bread bowls, the soup may be officially considered a “starter,” but it is unfailingly a star of the Italian-inspired specialty dining experience. 

“Mushrooms thrive only in the right temperature, humidity and appropriate forest habitat, and Italy’s climate is a perfect host for many varieties. Porcini mushrooms, with their luxurious, meaty texture and taste, are the stars of Italian cuisine. Morels are beloved due to their flavor and rarity, as they require very particular growing conditions. We use both of these, plus creminis and portobellos, in our Forest Mushroom Soup, which we feature in our Prego restaurants. We serve it in oregano bread cups; however, any plain or flavored round bread loaf may be used.”

Rolf Weber, Prego Chef de Cuisine

Prego’s Forest Mushroom Soup

¾ cup dried or 1 cup fresh morel mushrooms
¾ cup fresh portobello mushrooms, sliced with no skin
¾ cup fresh white button mushrooms, sliced
1 cup dried or ¾ cup fresh porcini mushrooms
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 shallots, finely minced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
½ cup dry white wine
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
½ cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons mixed fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, oregano and basil leaves)
4 to 6 bread loaves, individual-sized

If using dried mushrooms, wash thoroughly to remove excess soil; soak for 10 minutes in warm water. Remove stems and discard. Cut caps into bite-sized pieces. Heat medium saucepan over medium heat with olive oil; add all mushrooms and sauté for 3 minutes. Add shallots and garlic; sauté for 2 minutes. Season to taste, add white wine and let simmer until reduced by half. Add broth and bring to a simmer; add cream and simmer again. Reduce heat and let cook for 25 minutes. In blender or food processor, purée half of soup until smooth, then return purée to pan; stir in the fresh herbs and cook for another minute. Adjust seasoning as desired and keep warm.

Preheat oven to 180°F (82°C). Remove tops of bread and hollow out to create bread bowls. Place bowls on a baking sheet and heat for 3 minutes. Remove bread from oven and pour hot soup into bowls. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Wine Pairing

Produttori del Barbaresco, Riserva Asili, Italy 2004

“This signature dish boasts a rich, creamy texture from several combined mushrooms, each adding its own character. To balance this heavy creamy texture and enhance the soup’s flavors, we recommend Produttori del Barbaresco Riserva Asili 2004, with its earthy personality, fine acidity, firm tannin and aromas of dried fruits and dried rose petals. The time, patience and passion with which this Barbaresco is made makes it the best companion for the dish and rewards you with a joyful experience of taste and texture.”

Ilija Marojevic, Restaurant Manager