Roasted Mushroom Broth with Kombu

What You'll Need

  • baking sheet
  • stock pot
  • oven for roasting
  • strainer or cheese cloth
  • canning jar funnel
  • straight sided mason jars for storage
  • 1 pound mixed mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 onion, quartered, with skin on
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 quarts cold water or prepared chicken broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1” fresh ginger, smashed
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 6” dried kombu
  • a generous drizzle of olive oil
  • salt to taste, at serving
  • Optional: a splash of hot sauce, or brine from fermented peppers, for serving

In the cool months of winter, mushrooms are at their best; sometimes, for the forager, a day’s harvest is more than can eaten in a few meals. While some mushrooms can be dehydrated, others, like Chanterelles, do not rehydrate well. This recipe is made for just such a bounty; however, it is very nearly as good when made from mushrooms that can be foraged from the shelves of a local grocery, or the stalls of a farmer’s market. The mushroom stems that might otherwise be discarded after making certain dishes are still full of flavor, and are a welcome addition to the broth, as are a splash of white wine, and a strip of Kombu. Roasting the mushrooms adds another layer of flavor, warm and full. This broth can be frozen for longer term storage, used in risottos, as a base for other soups, or simply enjoyed as it is, steaming in a bowl cupped in your hands. It also makes a wonderful base for a vegetarian gravy or sauce.

Inspiration for this broth comes from Jennifer Mc Gruther’s latest, Broth and Stock from the Nourished Kitchen: Wholesome Master Recipes for Bone, Vegetable, and Seafood Broths and Meals to Make with Them, though we haven taken some liberty with the recipe. It makes about half a gallon of broth.

roasted mushroom brothDirections

1) Roast mushrooms

Preheat the oven to 425°F, and prepare the ingredients as directed. Spread the mushrooms and onion in a baking sheet, and drizzle them generously with olive oil.
Toss to coat. roasted mushroomsRoast the mushroom mixture in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the mushrooms from the oven and drop them in a stock pot. If you like, reserve a few mushrooms to float on the surface of the broth, once it is finished.
roast mushroom broth

2) Prepare and cook your broth

Pour the water or broth over the mushrooms, and add the thyme, white wine, garlic, ginger, and kombu. Chicken broth makes for a more complex flavor, but using fresh water keeps it purely vegetarian. If you have any extra carrot tops, onion skins, potato peels, or the like, feel free to throw them in as well.  Bring to a boil over medium high heat, then reduce heat and simmer the broth for 30-45 minutes, covered.
kombu for flavor

3) Strain and season

Remove the pot from heat, and strain the solids from it.
A splash of brine from fermented hot peppers is a lively addition, adding both fire and salt, as well as another layer of complexity. (Of course, a splash of any hot sauce does this as well, but why not use the brine from peppers, if you have some handy!)

4) Pour into storage containers or enjoy immediately

At this point, the broth can be enjoyed as is; float a few elegant roasted mushroom bits on the surface, and salt to taste. Alternatively, the brine can be poured into straight-sided canning jars and frozen for long term storage, or kept fresh in the refrigerator for a few days.

Over to You

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