This recipe is from a cooking class on our Culinary Vacation to Mexico, taught by Chef Arturo Lopez Arce Abundis. A perfect fall soup that features many ingredients that can be found at your local farmers’ market!
Grilled Forest Mushroom and Tomato soup with Avocado Mousse (exact quantities are an estimate)
Feeds a party
1/2 lb Oyster, shiitake, portabello or other firm flavorful mushrooms, sliced if large, but keeping pieces slightly bigger than bite-sized.
6 Roma tomatoes , sliced in half
5 whole sweet, small bell peppers
1 whole garlic heads
2 patty pan (or slightly firm) squash sliced into ¼ inch discs
1 large white onions, cut in half, papery skin removed
1 large red onions, cut in half, papery skin removed
garlic oil, made from minced garlic and olive oil
1/2 cup raw pepitas
salt and pepper
Garnish: fennel fronds, radish matchsticks, cilantro leaves, finely sliced dried/fresh guajillo chiles
Preheat grill to about 350.
Generously drizzle vegetables (mushrooms, tomatoes, patty pan squash, onion halfs) with garlic oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper and place on grill until nicely browned, turning as needed.
Meanwhile, heat about 3 tbsp garlic oil in a saucepan and add pepitas, stirring regularly until browned and popping. Remove from oil and sprinkle with salt. Let cool.
Coarsely mash 2 grilled tomato halves and a quarter of a grilled white onion in a processor or mortar.
Place avocado in a food processor with lime juice and blend until creamy. Add a pinch of salt.
Place avocado “mousse” in a plastic ziplock bag in fridge for later.
Remove vegetables from grill when done and place in separate bowls or plates.
Broth: Place 4 grilled tomato halves and 1 cloves of the grilled garlic in a blender. Pour into saucepan and add water to make a thin broth. Salt to taste if needed.
Place slices of grilled squash, mushroom and a couple tablespoons of the toasted pepitas on the bottom of a wide shallow soup bowl.
Place a heaping spoonful of the mashed tomato and onion mixture on to of the vegetables.
Cut a small hole in the bag with the avocado mousse and squeeze a few piles of the mousse onto the vegetables.
Place garnishes on top of grilled vegetables in a thoughtful arrangement.
Pour broth around until it comes up about ½ inch from bottom of bowl.