Favorite Snow Day Recipes

This is one of my favorite recipes to make on snow days–Triple Mushroom Bisque–which we’ve had a lot of, recently.  This is hearty and warm and really fills you up with a lot of work.  One of my friends was asking for the recipe, so I’ve simply cut and pasted my response to her.

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Easy Peasy–looks like a lot, but very simple. Even my brother in law can make it to impress the ladies, and he’s the tv dinner type. Here’s the link to it out of the magazine–below is my version from memory.

http://find.myrecipes.com/recipes/recipefinder.dyn?action=di
splayRecipe&recipe_id=224681

1 bunch of fresh thyme
2-3 small packages of gourmet mushrooms (ie, cremini, porcini, shitake, baby bellas, whatever you find)
1 block of cream cheese, light
1 cup of chicken stock
1/2 cup of red wine
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 pkg wild rice mix (the microwave kind–or 1 cup boxed wild rice mix)
The dark meat off one roasted chicken (I roast chicken all the time and set aside the dark meat in the freezer for this recipe.)

Heat a stew pot/paella pan (those deep, rounded pans) with a tbsp or two of olive oil, and add the sliced mushrooms and the thyme. Saute until a sauce forms–the liquid will come out of the mushrooms and make this wonderful brown mushroom stock. Takes about 5-7 minutes. (it will smell really good at this point.) Add the balsamic vinegar and stir to coat the mushrooms with the sauce. Add the red wine, let reduce for a couple minutes, then add the chicken stock and the chicken. Let simmer on low/medium-low for about 30 minutes. Add cream cheese and stir. It will be blotchy (lots of little pieces floating)–let it simmer some more and stir every few minutes, the heat will dissolve the cream cheese. Add the wild rice mix and serve.

If its the microwave rice mix, add it five minutes before you serve. If its a regular rice mix, add it at the same time you add the cream cheese, and let it heat for 20-30 minutes.

The regular recipe calls for milk and flour–I never need it. This is a thick stew, especially as the rice absorbs broth and releases starch into the liquid.

Rule of thumb, the liquid should cover the mushrooms–just by a quarter inch or less. If you need more liquid, feel free to add equal parts wine and stock.

Serve with a hearty bread, like a Rosemary Focaccia, and a salad and you’ve got a meal.