A light, creamy chicken of the woods soup scented with aromatic summer herbs and garnished with tender dumplings is a foragers take on classic comfort food. It's also a good vegetarian mushroom recipe if you don't use chicken stock.
This is a simple soup anyone can make. If seeing the words dumpling in the title makes you think twice don't worry. A good chef trick for easily adding dumplings to any soup is to just add a few frozen gnocchi. You can also use a package of gnocchi from the store, but they won't be as tender as my gnocchi recipe from Rome.
Step By Step
The soup starts out with a base of carrot onion and celery similar to basic chicken and dumpling soup. The images below describe the process.
Soups are one of the best things you can make with wild mushrooms, especially dried. If you want more ideas, check out my full collection of wild mushroom soup recipes.
More Ways to Use Chicken of the Woods
- Chicken of the Woods Nuggets
- Chicken Mushroom Risotto
- Fried Chicken of the Woods
- Sauteed Chicken of the Woods
Creamy Chicken of the Woods Soup with Dumplings and Herbs
- 3 quart soup pot
- 6-8 oz chicken of the woods mushrooms
- 4 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter divided
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 3 oz carrot 1 small
- 3 oz celery 1 rib
- 3 oz yellow onion 1 small
- 2 oz shallot 1 small, optional
- 4 oz cooked gnocchi or other potato dumplings
- Small handful of torn basil leaves or tarragon
- Fresh grated lemon zest and juice
- Make the roux by mashing the flour and butter together in a bowl until smooth and reserve.
- Dice the carrot, onion, celery. Finely chop the shallot or dice ¼ inch. Heat one tablespoon of the butter in a 3 quart sauce pot.
- Add the vegetables and cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally until the onion is translucent. Take your time and really cook them, it should take about 5 minutes.
- Add the chicken of the woods and cook until tender. You make need to cover the pot and add a splash of liquid to steam them. You can also use frozen mushrooms.
- Deglaze the pan with the wine, the add the stock and bay leaf, cover and bring to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
- Add the kneaded roux and mash it against the side of the pot with a spoon, stirring it into the soup until it dissolves. After the soup has visibly thickened, add the cream and turn the heat to as low as possible.
- Meanwhile, cook the dumplings in boiling salted water and add to the soup.
- Add a few scrapes of lemon zest to taste, along with the juice. Only add enough so you can barely taste it. A few teaspoons of juice is fine.
- Add the herbs, stir, double check the seasoning again until it tastes great, and serve. Like most soups, it will taste better the next day.
- Leek can be substituted for the onion and shallot.
- Potatoes can be substituted for the gnocchi if you have to.
- Lemon thyme would be very good here.
- If you have fresh chives they’re also a great garnish.
- If you have a lot of chicken of the woods, saute chicken of the woods and put a little pile of them on top to finish.