Roasted Mushroom Soup

Serves 6 to 8. Recipe is from Cheryl Santangelo of Red Hill Creole Mushroom Farm, Independence.

1 lb. mushrooms (portobello, white or a mix of portobello and white)

Vegetable cooking spray

1 stick butter

1 bunch green onions, finely chopped

1/2 large sweet onion, chopped

5 to 6 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced

3 tbls. flour

1 tsp. red pepper

1 tsp. salt

1 tbl. chicken base (or mushroom stock made from mushroom stems)

1 qt. water (stock of choice may be substituted for chicken base and water)

1 pint half-and-half

1. Roast mushrooms in oven at 400 degrees for about 25 to 30 minutes or until all moisture has cooked out of mushrooms. Coat mushrooms with vegetable cooking spray or butter. Cool.

2. In large saucepan, melt stick of butter and sauté green onions for 5 minutes. Add sweet onion and garlic. Sauté another 5 minutes.

3. Mix in flour, red pepper and salt, stirring constantly for 3 to 4 minutes or until mixture begins to thicken. Add chicken base and water or stock and heat 15 minutes, stirring frequently.

4. Add half of the roasted mushrooms. Use a handheld immersion blender to cream all ingredients. Let cook for 5 to 10 minutes on low heat. Turn off heat and add half-and-half, stirring until well blended. Cover soup and let cool.

5. This recipe can be prepared ahead of time and placed in the refrigerator until time to serve. When ready to serve, cut remaining mushrooms into bite-size pieces and add to soup mixture while reheating. As with any cream soup, avoid reheating quickly as the cream will curdle. Warm to serving temperature.