I love making a mushroom stock when I have a few shrivelling up in the drawer of the fridge, cooking them long and slow with some garlic and onion and some dried or fresh herbs, before freezing it to use as the base of a flavoursome risotto or stew… Pungent and almost truffley, at just a fraction of the cost. But, my most recent fistful of wrinkly mushrooms were destined for the microwave project, along with some more of that large green passive-aggressive cabbage still rolling around in the fridge, which may make an appearance in the next ten recipes. So without further ado, allow me to introduce my very simple mushroom soup… Slightly salty, reminiscent of miso without any actual miso in, and so good I made it two days running.
To make a more substantial meal, you could add 50-70g uncooked rice, and an extra 50ml water, and cook it for an extra 2-4 minutes. Basic plain white rice would work well, but if your budget stretches to it, brown would give a nutty, delicious flavour. I’m going to try it later in the week with pearl barley, myself…
For a quick and easy work lunch, you could prepare all of the ingredients and cover with water, and simply ping it in the microwave to heat through. I carry soups around in jars with screw-on lids to be on the safe side (and no soupy paperwork) – just take the metal lid off before putting it in the microwave! Zzzzt!
Serves 1 at 37p each*
1 fat clove of garlic, 3p
30g onion, 1p
100g mushrooms, 24p
a handful of dark green leafy veg – I used cabbage, 8p
½ a vegetable stock cube, 1p
First peel and finely chop your garlic, and peel and finely chop your onion. Pop them in a microwave-safe container (NO METAL) and add a scant tablespoon of water. Cook on HALF power for 90 seconds, until softened but not burned, you just want to lose that raw edge to them.
Slice your mushrooms and thinly slice your dark green leafy veg, and add to the onions and garlic. Crumble over your stock cube. Cover with 250-300ml water, and stir well. The stock cube won’t dissolve until the water heats through, so don’t worry if it looks a little gross at the moment, it will all come together shortly.
Cover with clingfilm and pierce a few holes in the top to let steam escape and stop it from bursting/splattering your microwave with soup. Some people like to put a small plate on top instead, which works well too – use what you have and are comfortable with, there are many roads up the culinary mountain.
Cook on FULL power for two minutes, leave to stand for a minute, then repeat. And voila, a miso-y mushroom soup, ready in a flash, with very little effort. And huge amounts of deliciousness.
I worked out the cost of this recipe based on my most recent Sainsburys shop, because its my nearest big supermarket and where I do my weekly shop. Similar items are available at all the major supermarkets for around the same price – and things like loose mushrooms and onions may be cheaper at local shops or markets if you have any available in your area. Prices correct at the time of blogging but are subject to change. If you see any super offers on any of these ingredients at your local supermarket then please comment below as it’s good to share the bargain info. Basics garlic bulbs 35p/2. Basics onions 85p/1.5kg. Basics mushrooms 96p/400g. Savoy cabbage 80p. Basics vegetable stock cubes 25p/10.
I’ve given up my oven for Lent and am blogging recipes here – it’s a world of discovery but I hope it will be useful for people with limited cooking facilities, whether at home or at work, and if you’re looking to save money on your energy bills. You can follow the journey atwww.agirlcalledjack.com/microwave-recipes/and on Twitter atwww.twitter.com/msjackmonroe and on Instagram atwww.instagram.com/msjackmonroe and on Facebook atwww.facebook.com/agirlcalledjack
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